Two girls and a boy took the top three spots in this year’s edition of the UBA Foundation’s National Essay Competition as 14–year old Odjegba Divine Omesiri emerged the overall winner, carting away a brand new laptop as well as an educational grant worth N2,000,000.00 to study in any African university of her choice.
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Odjegba, a student of the International High School, Delta State, clinched the first position at the grand finale, which was held on Monday November 26th, 2018 at the UBA House, Marina Lagos. Divine beat 11 other finalists selected from over 6,000 entries received by the UBA Foundation from students of senior secondary schools across Nigeria. This year’s edition saw over 500 per cent increase in participation from pupils across every single state of the federation.
A visibly elated Odjegba who was escorted by her mother, Mrs Odjegba, said she was excited to have come top in the competition, adding that the experience has given her the confidence that she can face great challenges and emerge a winner.
Winning the competition, she said, would help her pursue her childhood dreams of becoming a Gynecologist. “This is something I prayed about and worked hard to achieve. I was in shock to hear my name announced as the winner and my mother and I cried for joy. I am indeed very grateful to UBA and the Foundation for this huge opportunity and making me believe in myself. This grant will go a long way to support my bid for quality education.”
The second prize was bagged by Ozemoka Halimat Emesomi aged 15, of University Preparatory Secondary School, Edo State, who won a N1,500,000 educational grant and a laptop, while the third prize of N1,000,000 and a brand new laptop went to Adiankpo Ini-Iso Christopher, 16 years old. Christopher attends the Nigerian Christian Institute Akwa Ibom State. The other 9 finalists all received brand new laptops.
Bola Atta, the MD/CEO of UBA Foundation while congratulating the winners commended them for their exceptional brilliance. “Every student who sent in an entry is a winner. To be confident about your writing skills and ambitious enough to enter a competition to further enhance your educational path is laudable. For those that did not win, I would say do not be discouraged. Take it as a challenge to perfect your writing skills and enter for the competition again in 2019” she said.
According to Atta, UBA Foundation, being the CSR arm of UBA Plc, makes it a point of duty to give back to communities where UBA operates. Education in any capacity, Atta noted, remains of the Foundation’s focus area as it is the bedrock of any nation.
In his remarks the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of UBA Plc Mr. Kennedy Uzoka, said UBA as a bank is happy that it is touching lives and making a solid impact through this competition and the grant it gives out annually to those who emerge winners.
“We have indeed noted the increase in the cost of living and have therefore increased the prize money by 100 per cent in all the categories. Seeing past winners tell their stories on the impact the grants have made on their education and particularly how the financial burden was lifted off their parents, gives us joy that our foundation is unique and deeply touching lives,” Uzoka said. He specifically mentioned the Each One Teach One initiative – the Foundation’s latest initiative where thousands of UBA staff members gave back to their communities across Africa, by imparting knowledge to students and the less privileged.
Uzoka informed the gathering made up of parents, students and the media, that the essay competition has produced over 100 winners, since its inception in 2011 in Nigeria, with winners studying varied courses in Universities in Nigeria and within the African continent. He encouraged the winners to be of good character, and ensure that apart from academic excellence, they must avoid any negative action that might dent the foundation’s image and that of their families as they are now UBA ambassadors.
The judges, led by Professor of English (Gender Studies) and Director of Pre-degree Studies, University of Uyo, Mrs. Ini Uko stated that they were impressed with the participants who showed great promise as to what to expect of the future of Nigeria, noting that most of the students wrote intelligently and their ideas were well articulated, new and refreshing. She added that the judges were also encouraged by the fact that entries came in from students from all parts of the country.
UBA Foundation’s National Essay Competition has been taken to other African countries including Ghana and Senegal as well as Mozambique and Kenya. The initiative will spread to more African countries in 2019.
UBA is one of Africa’s leading banks with operations in 20 African countries. It also has a presence in the global financial centers; London, New York, and Paris. UBA provides banking services to more than 15 million customers globally, through diverse channels.
BREAKING: Minister Of Transportation Rotimi Amaechi Attacked By ‘Misguided’ Nigerians In Spain
Some persons described as “misguided Nigerians” on Friday attacked the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, in Spain.
Amaechi said he was attacked at an event on climate change held in Madrid, Spain.
The minister disclosed this on his Twitter handle, @ChibuikeAmaechi.
He said Spanish police officers succeeded in stopping his attackers before they could hurt him.
He did not disclose the identities of his attackers.
The minister had tweeted:
Some minutes ago, I was attacked by a few misguided Nigerians while on national assignment at a climate change event in Madrid, Spain. They were quickly repelled by the Spanish police before they could do any harm. I am fine. I was not hurt. Thanks for your support & prayers.
— Chibuike.R. Amaechi (@ChibuikeAmaechi) December 6, 2019
Recall that the immediate past Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, in August, confirmed a physical assault on him by some members of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra in Nuremberg, Germany,
Ekweremadu confirmed the attack in a statement released by his Media Assistant, Uche Anichukwu, in Abuja.
The senator, who also gave an account of the event on his social media handle @iamekweremadu, also said that he was safe.
He condemned the attack and said he had immediately reported it to the Nigerian Ambassador to Germany, Mr. Yusuf Tuggar.
Ekweremadu had said, “I attended the Second Annual Cultural Festival and Convention organized by Ndi-Igbo Germany in Nurnberg today where I was billed to give a keynote address along with the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, who, however, could not make it eventually.
“I was given a resounding welcome by Ndigbo in Germany and everything went smoothly until some men, who identified themselves as IPOB members stormed the venue and began to complain about the killings in the South East, stressing that there would be no Igbo event at the venue.
“I tried to engage them, but when they became unruly, I had to leave the venue. The organizers also invited the police and I was accompanied out of the venue.
“Much as I am disappointed in their conduct, especially as I am one of the persons who have spoken up on justice for Ndigbo, the Python Dance, judicial killings in Igbo land and elsewhere both on the floor of the Senate and in my written and personal engagements with the Presidency and the media as well as rallied the southeast Senate Caucus to secure Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s release with Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe taking him on bail to douse tension in the South East, I nevertheless do not hold this to heart against them, for they know not what they do.”
Sowore Vs DSS: Suspend The Nigerian Constitution, Declare Full Military Regime —- Deji Adeyanju Advises Buhari
Convener of Concerned Nigerian, Deji Adeyanju, on Friday charged President Muhammadu Buhari to suspend the country’s constitution, disband National Assembly.
Speaking with newsmen, Adeyanju also charged Buhari to abrogate the judiciary and transform into a Military Head of State because he is a “tyrant.”
He was reacting after operatives of the Department of State Services, DSS, invaded the courtroom of an Abuja Federal High Court, chased away lawyers before re-arresting Omoyele Sowore, convener of RevolutionNow Movement.
Adeyanju said: “This is tyranny taken too far. We are now in a full military regime. Buhari should suspend the constitution, disband the national assembly, abrogate the judiciary and come out fully as military head of state.
“You saw the way they stormed the court like gangsters, chased away lawyers and took him away.
“Buhari is a tyrant. He has no human Sympathy.”
This is coming less than a day after he was released by the DSS after an Abuja Federal High Court ordered for his release within 24 hours.
Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu also ordered the DSS to pay the sum of N100,000 to Sowore, for refusing to release him on bail despite two court orders to that effect.
Hadiza Lied! We Never Sponsored Thugs To Harass NPA MD – Ocean Marine Solutions
The management of Ocean Marine Solutions Limited (OMSL) has debunked any knowledge or involvement in the physical attack of the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Ms. Hadiza Bala Usman, at the National Assembly.
NPA boss Ms. Hadiza Usman petitioned the President of the Senate, Dr. Ahmad Lawan alleging that she was physically attacked by hoodlums at the premises of the National Assembly in Abuja on Tuesday.
She claimed that her attack was sponsored by Chairman of Messrs Ocean Maritime Solutions Limited (OMSL), Captain Wells Okunbo apparently over the decision of the NPA on the Secure Anchorage issue after attending an investigative hearing in the Assembly.
She said that she was only saved a bigger assault by her security agents who took her into Senator Danjuma Goje’s office where she waited for the hoodlums to leave.
Reacting to the allegation, Commodore Chuma Adogu (rtd), said the allegation was a falsehood and a figment of imagination, saying the Chairman of OMSL, Captain Wells Okunbo, a fine gentleman who has served the nation diligently in various capacities, could not have sponsored thugs to attack the NPA boss.
Commodore Adogu (retired) noted that on that Tuesday there was no any sign of such alleged attach or rented crowd in the premises of the National Assembly that could warrant such allegation, maintaining that OMSL Management came to the National Assembly just like other invited organizations on the day of the investigation by the Joint Committee of the Senate investigating the Secure Anchorage Area (SAA).
‘’On the day of the investigation at the National Assembly, we came like other invited organizations and we never came with any thugs or rented crowd to harass anybody talkless the Managing Director of NPA. The security at the premises of the National Assembly was very tight as everybody was routinely checked and controlled while entering thus forestalling any rented crowd or thugs to gain entrance. We came before the panel and presented our position in the SAA without nursing hatred against anyone.
‘’Let me make it clear to the Nigerian public that OMSL is a responsible corporate organization with a lot of Nigerians working as its employees. We are mindful of this and never can we trade it away. I repeat we do not have hands nor did our Chairman sponsor any group of thugs to attack Ms. Hadiza Bala Usman. We see this as part of the attempts to discredit OMS and distract attention from the main issue which is already with the Senate’’ he submitted.