NBS to verify programme to increase access for out-of- school children


BY MOHAMMED ADAMU, JULY 27, 2022 | 02:40 PM

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) is set to verify the Better Education Service for All (BESDA) programme to increase equitable access for out-of-school children in Nigeria.

Prince Semiu Adeniran, the Statistician-General (S-G) of the Federation and Chief Executive Officer, NBS, said this at a workshop of the Training of Trainers for the 2nd Round of the BESDA Verification in Abuja on Tuesday.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that BESDA is a programme-for-result, funded by the World Bank to support an increase in access to basic education by increasing equitable access for out-of-school children.

The programme is also aimed at improving literacy and strengthen accountability for results in basic education in Nigeria. “BESDA, as you are all aware, is a results-based programme that allows states to earn rewards for achieving results under stipulated Disbursement Linked Indicators (DLI), with NBS serving as the Independent Verification Agency under the programme. “This round of the verification is the second and final for the project. The first round was successfully implemented with over 54,017 schools and non-formal centres visited physically for the verification.

” This represents approximately 82 per cent of the frame initially planned for, with the uncovered balance largely due to insecurity and issues with the frame.”

According to him, the training is a culmination of months of planning and preparation for the main verification which has included several activities.

Adeniran said the activities consisted of a pre-test exercise, which was conducted in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and Niger state, and a robust pilot study conducted in nine states.

He said this was to help gauge the level of preparation for the main exercise, among others.

The statistician-general said the verification was not only important to the BESDA programme itself, but also the statistical system in Nigeria.

“The verification process serves the critical purpose of enabling reward for state governments for their effort in improving literacy, accountability, and documentation in schools, as well as getting out of school children back into the classroom.

“The exercise also provides very important statistical information for planners within the education sector.

“As is generally known, it is impossible to make sustainable progress and development in any aspect of life without the adequate use of reliable data and statistics, so the importance of this exercise cannot be stressed enough. ”

He urged all the trainers, monitors, and data editors to fully participate and engage in this training exercise.

Adeniran said that the success of the programme greatly depended on how well they performed their role in training the interviewers, monitoring their work in the field, and reviewing and assessing their submissions.

“It is my belief that if we work hard and show the same commitment to the process as we did in the last phase, we can achieve what is expected of us.

“We can also deliver results that cannot be contested by any state or stakeholder under the programme.”

Hajia Amina Haruna, the National Coordinator, BESDA, Federal Ministry of Education, said the programme was a five-year programme which started in 2018 and would end on Oct. 31, 2022.

According to her, the programme is expected to cover the DLI. DLI are indicators that attract money or reward to a particular programme.

Haruna said the reward for the 17 focus states for the first phase was ready and would be disbursed soon based on the report.

She said that the 2nd Phase would be conducted in 17 BESDA Focus States. Haruna said the states included all states in the North-East and North-West, Niger State in the North-Central, Oyo State in the South-West, Ebonyi in the South- East and Rivers in the South-South.

NAN reports that the NBS is collaborating with the Federal Ministry of Education, Universal Basic Education Commission and Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning to verify BESDA.


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