For the first time in six years, secondary schools in Chibok, Borno state, have participated in the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WAEC).
The acting General Officer Commanding (GOC), 7 Division, Nigerian Army, Maj. Gen. Abdul-Khalifa Ibrahim, disclosed this yesterday while receiving members of the Education in Emergency Working Group (EiEWG) Nigeria, on Thursday in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.
Schools in Chibok were shut down in 2014 after Boko Haram insurgents abducted more than 200 students from the Government Girls Secondary School in the area.
While the federal government has secured the release of some of the girls, a few others are still in the custody of the insurgents.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported that Ibrahim, who doubles as the Commander, Sector 1, Operation Lafiya Dole, was represented by Ifeanyi Otu, Chief of Staff of the Division.
According to NAN, he noted the negative impact of insurgency on education in the north-east, adding that the situation has been brought under control.
“It will be gladdening to note that for the first time in the past six years, WAEC successfully held WASSCE in Chibok with the military providing security,” he said.
“We are all witnesses to what happened in the recent past like the abduction of the Chibok girls, the slaughtering of students at Buni Yadi and abduction of students at Dapchi. These are all that happened and we have turned around that narrative.
“Let me equally say that the chief of army staff has been making deliberate efforts through the education corps to post teachers to all schools within the north-east states.
“We are really doing enough to ensure that education is resuscitated and as we all know, education is one thing that liberates the individual and liberates the minds. In the first place, this conflict would not have thrived if not that there was high illiteracy rate in this zone.”
In her remarks, the leader of the EiEWG delegation and Director of Education, Ministry of Defence, , Afolake Taiwo, said the group’s visit was to commend the army for its efforts in promoting education in the region.
“We are passionate about making sure that our education is not under attack and this is actually coming from the Safe School Declaration (SSD) that was signed by the president,” she said.