A student of Loyola Jesuit College, Abuja, Munachi Ernest-Eze has made history in the Cowbellpedia Secondary Schools Mathematics Television Quiz Show by emerging overall winner in the senior category two years after winning in the junior category.
The day also belonged to Jesse Uche-Nwichi of Graceland International School, Rivers State, who defeated all comers to win in the junior category of the competition sponsored by Cowbell, the flagship brand from the stable of Promasidor Nigeria Limited.
Each of the champions got N1 million and an all-expense paid education abroad.
In the senior category, Ernest-Eze was trailed by Oluwanifise Onafowokan of The Ambassadors College, Ota, Ogun State and Evans Owamoyo of Greater Tomorrow International College, Arigidi Akoko, Ondo State who finished as first and second runners-up respectively.
Michael Paul of Excel Grace Academy, Akaajime-Gboko, Benue State; Ikechukwu Ibeh of Federal Government College, Suleja, Niger State and Tomiwa Olatunbosun of Bibo Oluwa Academy, Ilesha, Osun State were the other finalists in the senior category.
Ernest-Eze, who fulfilled his promise to re-enact his 2015 feat when he won in the junior category, could not hide his emotion after his history-making performance. â€œI thank God for the end of the journey today. I am now confident to tell Nigerians that I was a champion and I am a champion again today. God has done it and it is marvellous in my eyes.â€
His father, Ikechukwu Ernest-Eze, beaming with smiles, expressed gratitude to God and Promasidor for the double honours.
Earlier in a thrilling final encounter in the junior category, 13-year-old Uche-Nwichi scored 115 points to confine Oluwafemi Adeyanju of Jesuit Memorial College, Port Harcourt, Rivers State and Ezekiel Ekanem of Advanced Breed Group of Schools, Sagamu, Ogun State to the second and third places respectively.
The trio of Osasere Egharevba of Graceland International School, Port Harcourt; Joel Ndoh of Marist Brothers Juniorate, Okigwe, and Abdulwakil Olayinka of Nigerian Tulip International College, Kaduna could not go beyond the first round.
Uche-Nwichi dedicated his victory to God and his parents, while promising to maintain the momentum.
His father, Chukwu Uche-Nwichi, who could not conceal his excitement, commended the sponsor for the huge investment in the competition and urged government and the other corporate bodies to emulate the company.
Olatunde Ayorinde, Uche-Nwichiâ€™s teacher commended the champion for the honour he brought to him and to the school. â€œI thank God for today. My effort has not been in vain. Nothing can be better than this. I am grateful to God, Cowbell and Promasidor.â€ The first and second runners-up for each category won N750,000 and N500,000 respectively.
Each teacher of the 2017 champions in each category was rewarded N400,000, while those of the first and second runners-up received N300,000 and N200,000 respectively. Also, the winning schools won Mathematics textbooks, desktop computers and printers.
In a chat with journalists, the Managing Director of Promasidor Nigeria Limited, Anders Einarsson, reiterated the commitment of the company towards education, saying that it is the most important investment for the future of Nigerian children.
â€œThe programme has absolutely met its objectives. We are committed to this initiative and by next year, we will celebrate 20 years of Mathematics and Cowbell.â€
He congratulated the finalists for their performance and promised that the company would continue to support the academic development of Nigerian children.
In his remarks, the Registrar of the National Examinations Council (NECO), Professor Charles Uwakwe, commended Promasidor for the initiative and described education as the best legacy parents and society could give to children.
He pledged NECOâ€™s continued technical support for the project in appreciation of what he described as Promasidorâ€™s great corporate social responsibility to the Nigerian society.
On his part, the Commercial Director, Promasidor Nigeria Limited, Festus Tettey, thanked NECO for its partnership and extolled the level and quality of the competition.