UNESCO, NMEC launch first Nigerian non-formal education portal

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Lafia  –  The National Commission For Mass Literacy (NMEC), in collaboration with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), on Monday introduced Nigeria’s First non-formal education portal.

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Alhaji Yusuf Paiko, the Executive Secretary of NMEC, made this known at a two day workshop on Non-Formal Education and Education Management training (NFE-EMIS) for data collection in Lafia, Nassarawa state.

Paiko said that the gesture was necessitated by the need to gather and process data in the non-formal education sector which could not be jettisoned.

The portal, he emphasised, would improve efficiency in the delivery of non formal education services to citizens and other stakeholders.

He said that the portal was one of the flagship projects aimed to enable Nigerians access mass literacy services efficiently by the click of a button.

He said the use of the internet would revolutionise the speed and effectiveness of the non formal education programme across the country.

Paiko gave example of India, which has gone very far in developing its non-formal education through portal services, as a good example for Nigeria to emulate.

“For the past years, we have been struggling to get the support of UBEC and other funding agencies to develop our own system but we have not been able to achieve that.

“Luckily, with the revitalising adult and literacy programme, which provides some funds, we were able to develop our own portal which will help us to be more coordinated.
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“Now, with the web, we will be able to get the latest information on all the indicators.

“This will help us to key in all details including personnel, even finance, the number of centres we have and number of people enrolled,’’ he said.

According to Paiko, the states presently have the start off computers to sustain the programme because UNESCO, in collaboration with Samsung, gave out more than 1,200 computers to states.

He said that the portal would assist in the efforts to transit from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to the Sustainable Development Goals, while appealing to state governors to support the project.

Mrs Alice Ateh-Abang, project coordinator, Revitalising Adult/ Youth Literacy in Nigeria, UNESCO, said the launch was a unique occasion because “it is the first time a portal of this kind was being launched.’’

Ateh-Abang said the Service Portal is a Technology platform developed to provide a one-stop shop for all who wish to interact and engage in the non formal education sector to start accessing data anytime and anywhere.

She said that the new portal would allow Nigerian states to plan better based on data available on the on the Education Management Information System on mass literacy.

“The portal will provide baseline data on areas of mass education, which offer an excellent opportunity for the government to measure the progress made under the mass literacy scheme.

“The non-formal education had suffered inadequate funding because the real number of learners and illiterate Nigerians were not known but with the portal, that issue will be resolved,’’ Ateh-Abang said. (NAN)

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