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UBEC: Getting actual figure of out-of-school children impossible without census

UBEC: Getting actual figure of out-of-school children impossible without census
May 22
18:23 2023

The Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) says getting the actual figure of the out-of-school children in Nigeria is not possible without a national census.

Hamid Bobboyi, executive secretary of UBEC, spoke in Abuja on Monday at a colloquium in honour of the late Gidado Tahir.

The late Tahir was the pioneer executive secretary of the commission.

There have been various estimates regarding the figure of out-of-school children in the country in the past.


In its 2022 report, the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organizations (UNESCO) estimated that Nigeria has over 20 million children and youth who were out of school — the highest in Africa and third globally.

While speaking on the development, Bobboyi called on the National Population Commission (NPC) to conduct the 2023 census to enable UBEC to access reliable statistics.

“The only disappointment is on one issue that I needed to raise. You cannot get the number of out-of-school children for the simple fact that you need the population figures of the various age groups from the National Population Commission and the National Population Commission has not provided this,” he said.


“The estimates they have been making are no longer relevant so that is the reason why we are very desperate for a national census that can give us an idea of our accurate population.”

The UBEC executive secretary also said that the results of the 2022 national personnel audit (NPA) for basic education institutions in the country were almost ready for release.

“We are processing the results for the 2022 national personnel audit for school census as well as assessment of learning in education, which is one of the largest in Africa that will give us an idea of whether our children are learning or not and areas which we are having difficulties,” he added.

“So we are engaging this. We have to do it in the interest of the basic education sector and its development in Nigeria.


“The results of the national personnel audit are almost ready. Our hope is to launch both the national assessment of learning as well as the personnel audit in July or thereabout.”

The 2023 census was earlier billed to hold across the country between May 3 and 5 but was later postponed indefinitely.

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