The Edo State team has emerged winners of the fourth Lafarge Africa National Literacy Competition. This was after beating their counterparts from Anambra, Plateau, Kano, and Ondo at the grand finale, which held on Thursday, November 16, 2017 at the Eko Hotel and Suites Hall, Victoria Island, Lagos.
The winning team comprised Yusuf Hassan of Eson Ne Rie Model Primary School, Benin City and Faith Toun-Agbai of Eghuare Primary School, Irrua. They were rewarded with the star prize of N250, 000 each plus scholarship offer.
There was initially a tie in determining the runners up in the competition between Ondo and Kano. After what could be termed a fierce competition, Ondo emerged 1st runner up while Kano was the 2nd runner up.
The Lafarge National Literacy Competition is organised yearly, in collaboration with Ovie Brume Foundation, a non-governmental organisation and the State Universal Basic Education Board of the participating states. Regional preliminaries were conducted in a build up to the finals. The theme for this year’s is “Bridging the literacy gap”.
Speaking with EduCeleb.com, Lafarge’s Director of Communications, Public Affairs and Sustainable Development, Mrs. Folashade Ambrose-Medebem said the competition was an avenue to work together with critical stakeholders in the education sector by promoting literacy and communication.
In her words, “The reason why we chose the theme is to explore how we can work together with critical stakeholders. So, today, for instance, we had representatives from the Federal and state ministries of education. We have a number of critical stakeholders as well. This is rrally the time to really collaborate together as a nation to bridge the literacy gap.”
She thanked the stakeholders, especially teachers, for preparing the pupils ahead of the competition while also hinting of Lafarge’s plans to immediately commence training teachers ahead of the next edition of the competition in 2018.
The Lafarge National Literacy Competition engages pupils in activities that measure and advance their ability to read, write and spell correctly. It also features literacy tests, essay/summary writing and spelling bees to evaluate their reading and writing abilities.
The previous three editions of the Lafarge National Literacy Competition had had Akwa Ibom state winning in 2014, Rivers in 2015, and Lagos in 2016.
For the past four years, Lafarge Africa Plc has held the National Literacy Competition to support government efforts in raising the standard of English Language in public primary schools. Primary school students between the ages of 9 and 13 year are the primary target for this competition.
Since its inception, over 200,000 primary school pupils across 244 local government areas (LGAs) have been impacted.