Queen’s College, Yaba has emerged winner of the 2019 edition of the Eloquence Cup, aimed at enhancing public speaking among secondary school students.
Among other objectives, the competition with the theme ‘Our Maritime, Our Future: Unlocking the Potential in Nigeria’s Coasts and Seas’, is designed to nurture the culture of effective spoken communication at the secondary school level.
Speaking at the programme in Lagos recently, the Dean of the School of Eloquence and a certified public speaker, Mr. Ubong Essien, said the Eloquence Cup is an annual, iconic oratory competition between two of Nigeria’s heritage schools, King’s College and Queen’s College.
He said the biannual competition would serve as a stepping stone to greatness for the students of the two schools because by learning the art of public speaking early in life, they would not stutter like some adults anytime there is a need for them to speak in public.
“Our expectation is that when they rise to the position of leadership later in life, they will be able to speak with confidence in public, because that is the purpose of the programme to catch them young as part of the company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) project.”
Both schools displayed an understanding of the theme and how the potential of the maritime sector could be harnessed for the development of the Nigerian economy like what obtains in developed economies.
In her remarks, the Deputy Director, Planning, Research and Data Management Services Department of the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Mrs. Ronke Thomas said there has been lack of awareness about the maritime industry over the years.
“We have this interventionist programme called ‘Nigeria’s Seafarers Development Programme’ whereby we send students abroad to learn skills in different areas of the sector such as naval architecture and marine engineering.
“I implore the students to consider professions in the maritime sector, which is very wide and dynamic,” she said.
In his remarks, Mr. Seyi Sowemimo, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and board member of the school, encouraged the students to seize the opportunity to develop the art of public speaking.
Queen’s College was declared the overall winner of the competition by a panel of judges drawn from the alumni of the School of Eloquence.
Master Tamuno Ateli Joshua emerged the first place winner of the competition as individuals, followed by Miss Nnachi Grace as first runner-up, while Obinna Charles was the second runner-up. They were presented with certificates and gifts, including brand new laptop and tablets.
Also, consolation prizes were presented to Kamsy Uche-Ibeabuchi, Jane Chinazam Chucks-Oruchalu and Racheal Alatise.