By Erharuyi A. Joe
As part of responses to the call of Edo State Government on individuals, institutions and donor agencies to support the funding of secondary and technical education in the State, Cowrie 25, a Pan Benin Professional Club, which promotes Education has awarded scholarships to 28 senior secondary students in the State.
Responding on behalf of the State Government, the Commissioner for Education, Dr Joan Osa Oviawe, poured encomiums on the delegates of the Club, describing them as dependable partners who have consistently supported education in the State.
Dr. Oviawe, while appreciating the support of Cowrie 25 through scholarship awards, assured that such contributions will not be taken for granted. She pledged the commitment of Governor Godwin obaseki’s administration in building a system that will continue to deliver quality education to the children of the State in order to justify the Club’s investment in the students.
According to Oviawe, “Your scholarship makes a difference. And for many of our students, it is that push for them to put in the extra efforts; it is wonderful for them to know that people care; it is wonderful for them to feel visible in society and not be invisible because of the socio-economic status of their parents or guardians.”
Briefing the recipients in Benin city, Dr. Anthony Ogunbor said that Cowrie 25 Club, which came into existence 25 years ago, is a group of indigenous Edo professionals who are based in Lagos State with the common interest of promoting the interest of Edo State.
Dr. Ogunbor chronicled the scholarship to have started in the past, but that the outbreak of COVID-19 disrupted the process. He revealed that the disruption birthed a redesign of the scheme which is intended to benefit an average of 150 students across secondary schools and universities in the State. He emphasised that benefitting students will be monitored in order to justify the investment of Cowrie 25 in them, adding that it would do the Club proud if benefitting students at the secondary school level qualify for the university scholarship in the future.
He assured that the scholarship scheme will be sustained, as according to him, it is funded in advance by the return-on-investment, which has been put together by members of the Club.
He admonished the recipients to be focused in whatever they do, stressing that there is no alternative to good education, as opposed to irregular migration, which he said amounts to second phase of slavery.
Highpoint of the event was the presentation of scholarship to the benefitting students, who include Omozogie Miracle from Imaguero College; Anita Igbinomwanhia from Oredo Girls’ Secondary School; Amadin Osaruese from Edo College; amongst others.