The Federal Government has begun the renovation and rehabilitation of 104 unity colleges in the country, Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, has said.
He said the rehabilitation exercise include replacement of broken toilets, ceilings, creation of additional classrooms and the renovation of existing ones.
The minister said the renovation, directed by President Muhammadu Buhari, is aimed at expanding access to education in the country.
He stated this during the monitoring of 2019 common entrance examination organised by the National Examination Council, in Abuja, on Saturday.
The minister said about 25, 000 students would be given admission into the colleges nationwide.
Adamu, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Sonny Echono, disclosed that the government had already begun recruitment of teachers to carter for the new intake next term.
He said: “We have a challenge of access to education in this country, as part of our interventions to ensure that we bring more children into the school system and reduce the number of kids who are out-of-school, we are having so many programmes. One of it is to increase the spaces available in our unity colleges.
“You are aware that each time we do this there are other consequential interventions that are needed. You need to have additional classrooms; you need to have additional teachers.
“We are pleased that Mr. President graciously approved that we should begin to rehabilitate many of these unity colleges. Besides the security infrastructure, we are now providing both new classrooms and as well as rehabilitating the dilapidated ones and we are also dealing with the libraries, laboratories and so on.
“We are recruiting additional teachers for the unity schools as we speak. Both the regularisation of PTA teachers and new recruitment are ongoing at the Federal Civil Service Commission as we speak and they will come in early enough for them to be inducted, trained, given some kind of preparation ahead of the opening of the schools next term.”
He said the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing has already approved four interventions in some unity schools in Abuja.
The minister explained that the intervention is to rehabilitate broken toilets, ceilings and classrooms to compliment what the ministry of education is doing.
“We hope that in the next few years, all those schools will be returned to their glory days,” he added.
NECO’s Acting Registrar, Abubakar Gana, said 75, 635 candidates sat for the examination on Saturday in 457 centres nationwide, including one centre in Port Novo, Benin Republic.
Gana said that the results of the examination will be released on Wednesday by the agency through the ministry of education.
He urged parents to check NECO’s website for the released results.
Lagos state had the highest number of registered candidates with 23, 459 while Zamfara had the lowest with 59 candidates.
“The results are expected to be released by NECO to the Federal Ministry of Education on Wednesday 1st May 2019 after which the ministry would direct NECO to release it to the public after the selection exercise.
“Candidates are to check the status of their admission both at the various Federal Unity Colleges and online via NECO website: www.neco.gov.ng as soon as the release of the results is announced,” the ministry added in a statement.