By Gabriel Dike
As part of its corporate social responsibility, Cambridge University Press Nigeria Limited recently donated different books to selected primary schools in Lagos State to boost reading culture.
Officials of Cambridge University Press Nigeria were in the office of the Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board (LASUBEB), Maryland, to make a symbolic presentation to the executive chairman, Mr. Wahab Alawiye-Kings, and other board members, as the books had been distributed to the schools.
Cambridge Press’ country manager, Mr. Lawrence Aladesuyi, who presented the books to LASUBEB chairman, Mr. Alawiye-Kings, said the donation of the educational materials was in collaboration with UNICEF.
According to him, the books have already been distributed to the selected primary schools in the state but the symbolic presentation to LASUBEB was necessary to establish a working relationship.
Said he: “We donated NERDC-certified books to Lagos primary schools. We are doing the same thing in another state. We are donating English, Mathematics, Basic Science and Technology. The books are meant for Primary 1 to 6 pupils.
“We want the pupils to read quality books and be educated. You know quality books are hard to come by. Our future depends on the pupils, they are our future. When they are educated, it will help the country. The pupils can take the books home to read. When schools were closed because of COVID-19, the pupils used Internet and read books online.’’
Aladesuyi said schools in Lagos were selected for the donation because Cambridge Press operates in the state, stressing “We think it is worthy to give these books to Primary 1 to 6 pupils in Lagos State.’’
While presenting some of the books to the LASUBEB chairman, alongside the human resources/ administration officer, Bimbo Fasesin, Aladesuyi said the books were meant for pupils in the riverine areas of the state.
He stated that Cambridge University Press came into Nigeria in 1534 to publish quality educational books and called for collaboration between Cambridge Press and LASUBEB to boost primary education.
“We will monitor how the books are being used by the Primary 1 and 6 pupils. Some of the pupils in the riverine areas don’t even see books to read. We donate the books through UNICEF, which coordinates children’s activities.’’
Alawiye-Kings commended Cambridge University Press for the donation of the books and stressed that the gesture would improve the performance of the pupils.
Tje chairman noted that the state government could not fund education alone and called on corporate organisations and individuals to support government to provide quality education, adding “education is the responsibility of all.”
He assured the representatives of Cambridge University Press that LASUBEB would monitor how the books are put to use, stating “We are open for collaboration in the area of knowledge sharing and training.
“Donations like this will spur LASUBEB into more action. This is the type of intervention we expect from stakeholders. The primary school pupils will be happy with what Cambridge University Press has done,’’ Alawiye-Kings explained.