…..initiative commits to improving quality of education
Leading indigenous oil and gas exploration and production company, Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc (SEPLAT) in partnership with its JV partner, the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) has rewarded three schools and several students at the 2019 edition of the SEPLAT PEARLs Quiz Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programme.
The PEARLs Quiz is a unique CSR initiative of SEPLAT aimed at promoting academic excellence, rewarding diligence and raising the quality of education in SEPLAT’s operational areas. Since 2012, over 608 schools have participated in the programme while winning students and schools have received cash prizes and projects.
Eight schools from Delta State including Federal Government College Warri, Deeper Life High School Opete, Peniel Academy Agbor, Divine Academy High School Sapele and DSC Technical High Schools Aladja made it to the knockout stage of the 2019 edition. While Don Bosco Science Academy Ekpoma, Uniben Demonstration Secondary School Benin, Pioneer Education Centre Benin were among the nine Edo State based schools that participated at the knockout stage this year.
After a rigorous and challenging competition, Don Bosco Science Academy Ekpoma emerged overall winner of the competition; while Peniel Academy Agbor and Deeper Life High School Opete emerged as second and third runners-up respectively.
Speaking at the event which was held at Imaguero College, Benin City, Mr. Austin Avuru, Chief Executive Officer SEPLAT, represented by Mr. Chima Njoku, General Manager Western Assets SEPLAT, said: “This programme is designed to rekindle the spirit of academic excellence and healthy competition in our youths by motivating, encouraging and rewarding the scholarship spirit in them as they inculcate the principles of team work.”
Also speaking at the event, Dr Chioma Nwachuku, General Manager, External Affairs & Communications, noted that: “SEPLAT PEARLs Quiz addresses Sustainability Development Goal 4 by ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education for both public and private schools in Edo and Delta States, thus promoting lifelong learning opportunities for the teeming youth population.”
Projects that have been delivered to schools through the initiative over the years include a language laboratory, 3 roofing projects, decked block-of-classrooms, interlocking stones for an entire school premises designed to stave off erosion, 5 computer laboratories in different schools and 4 brand new school buses.
This year, the overall wining school received N7million. The first runner-up received N3million, while the second-runner received N1million. Students and teachers were also rewarded with laptops, cash prizes, and learning materials, including stationary.
Speaking at the event, Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, represented by Hon. Jimoh Ijegbai, Commissioner for Education thanked Seplat for instituting and sustaining the competition. Governor Obaseki thanked the management and staff of SEPLAT for their consistency in organising the PEARLs Quiz Competition for an uninterrupted 8-year stretch.”
In the same vein, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, Governor of Delta State, represented by Prince Emmanuel Amgbaduba, Commissioner for Oil and Gas expressed gratitude to SEPLAT for putting together an event that promotes the Sustainable Development Goals and promotes healthy competition among students.
SEPLAT PEARLs Quiz challenge started in 2012 out of the determination of the company and its JV partner to inspire excellence in secondary school children in public and private schools in their host states. The company has through the PEARLs Quiz initiative provided scholarships to 63 students, implemented projects valued at over N30million in more than eight schools, given out four brand new 16-seater buses as well as consolation prizes to the last seven schools every year since inception.