Last week, the media was awash with another splendid performance of Anambra in education sector. It was announced that the State has done it again by taking the coveted first position in the 2020 National Common Entrance Examination results just released by the National Examinations Council (NECO).

Out of over seventy thousand candidates, who sat for the Common Entrance Examination nationwide, Crucifixio Chinua Umeonyiagu, a pupil of God’s Wisdom International Primary School, Nnewi, took the first position by scoring 199 marks out of 200. The NECO Registrar, Professor Godswill Obioma presented the results to the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu in Abuja. The highest scoring Umeonyiagu has once again put on the front burner Anambra State’s almost unassailable leadership in education in Nigeria.

While the government and people of Anambra were still basking in the euphoria of the exploit, news filtered in again that two universities in the state – Nnamdi Azikiwe University and Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University – were among the three tops in another academic competition at Lagos.

During an annual International Conference and Exhibition of the Nigerian Association of Petroleum Explorationists (NAPE), final year and post graduate Students from Nigerian Universities participated in the Basin Evaluation Competition, organized by the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG). At the end of the competition, Nnamdi Azikiwe University and Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University emerged second and third positions respectively, beaten all other universities in Nigeria.

It would be recalled that Francis Chijioke Osakwe from Umuoji in Idemili North LGA scored an ‘A1’ in each of the nine subjects he sat in the 2020 West African School Certificate examination, which was released earlier this month. Two indigenes of Anambra State – Ego Maduafokwa from Ihiala, and David Nwobi from Njikoka LGA, scored the highest marks in the 2020 Joint Matriculation Examination (JME).

Favour Obiajulu Okeke from Eziowelle in Idemili North LGA took the first position in the competition organized by the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology for outstanding science secondary school students throughout the country last year. Nelson Uwakwe from British Spring College, Awka took the second position in the 2020 competition, which was organised in March.

The same month, Government Technical College, Onitsha took the third position in the national Junior Engineers, Technicians and Scientists (JETS) Expo in Abuja, which President Muhammadu Buhari attended in person.

Anambra State, in 2018, put Nigeria on top of the technology map of the world after a global contest when five students of Regina Pacis Model Secondary School, Onitsha, who represented Nigeria and Africa at the World Technovation Challenge in Silicon Valley, San Francisco, USA won the coveted Gold Medal.

A week later, Tochukwu Anyigbo from Ihiala, who was personally sponsored in the competition by Governor Willie Obiano, won the third place in the Global Robotics Competition in Mexico.

Saint John’s Secondary School, Alor in Idemili South LGA won the third position in the International Festival of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) held in Tunisia in 2019. Governor Obiano, who, as a student of the Christ the King College (CKC), Onitsha in 1974, won the first prize in a national essay competition organised in memory of President John Kennedy of the United States by the American Embassy, is set to lead Anambra people to receive the young educational laureates.

No doubt, this is our way to demonstrate to all and sundry that these youngsters are worthy ambassadors and role models. In a society which is unfortunately marked by crass materialism, it is reassuring that there are persons like Governor Obiano leading the charge to change our national values, so that we can begin to pay homage to knowledge and enduring values rather than mammon. Indeed, Anambra is the Light of the nation.

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