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Nigerian student breaks academic record in UK, bags 2017 Dudley Newitt Prize



Joseph Atainyang, Uyo

A Nigerian student, has again broken the existing academic record at the Imperial College, London and was Monday, February 26, honoured by the college with the enviable Dudley Newitt Prize for Experimental Excellence.

 Christiana Esio Udoh, 26 had since the first six month of enrolling for a Ph.D in Chemical Engineering, exuded exceptional academic feat which attracted a complete scholarship from the school.

The award was officially announced during the Dudley Newitt Lecture at the university campus, London.

A peep into her academic records shows that Christiana Udoh, while at the Airforce Secondary School, Uyo during their valedictory session in 2006, picked 15 out of 21 prizes given in a class of 72 students in virtually all the core subjects.

It could be recalled that Christiana led her team of contestants during the 2006 NNPC science quiz contest, where Akwa Ibom State emerged overall winner ahead of 26 other states of the Federation.

In Ghana at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Christiana Udoh, a native of Okosi Village in Urue Offong/Oruko local government area of Akwa Ibom State, passed with unprecedented First Class in Chemical Engineering in 2012, the first of its kind since the School started in 1959.

At the Imperial College London, Christiana is said to be the first Nigerian to have merited this award since the birth of the University in 1845. Meanwhile, she had earlier thrilled the institution with her impressive performance during her Advanced Masters studies in Chemical Engineering, which again, attracted a scholarship of $20 thousand from the Akwa Ibom State Government which was presented by Governor Udom Emmanuel.

Governor Emmanuel who had commended her for making the state proud through dedication and commitment to her academics, thanking the father, Dr Esio Okwong Udoh for investing in her education, had charged her never to rest on her oasis but push further to break more grounds for a better success story.

Reacting to the development, the awardee’s father, Dr. Esio Okwong Udoh said his daughter was a pacesetter who has remained undaunted in being top of her class, irrespective of the environment. He said, “Whether in Nigeria, Ghana or over there in far away United Kingdom, Christiana has retained her number one position and we feel thrilled about it. This shows that Nigeria is on course to favourably compete with any nation of the world.”

Esio Udoh, himself a medical doctor and outstanding politician, frowned at a situation where the Nigerian government paid deaf ears to issues of education, especially when less than one percent of the country’s GDP is allocated to education.

The two term Member for Oron Federal Constituency called on Nigeria to imbibe Israeli educational system where brilliant students are exclusively trained in military and technology so as not to waste her best brains.

He referred Nigeria’s policy makers to countries like South Africa, and both Indonesia and Malaysia which allocates not below 17 percent and at least 20 percent of their GDPs to education respectively.

According to him, such schools which should have boarding facilities, qualified and well paid teachers, discipline, security and well equipped libraries and laboratories for effective teaching and learning, could help the state to produce at least 10 thousand perfect products that could readily gain admissions into universities.

His words, “I always believe the Akwa Ibom State Government can build model schools in each of the 10 federal constituencies, where clusters of schools around them could become feeders. The best students in each school could then be moved into the model schools where there are boarding facilities, qualified and well paid teachers, discipline, security and well equipped libraries and laboratories for effective teaching and learning.

“If this policy is implemented, Akwa Ibom State could stand out in technological development within the next couple of years. Nigeria should invest at least 20 percent of her GDP in education. Academic performance of our students is hampered by government’s negligence to meaningfully invest in education.

“Illiteracy is the greatest enemy of mankind. If you eradicate illiteracy, hunger is pursued out; diseases and vices that are generated by illiterate people would drastically reduce and our society would be a better place to stay.”

The elder statesman who enjoined the government of Akwa Ibom State under Deacon Udom Gabriel Emmanuel to build model schools in each of the 10 federal constituencies in the State and allocate 25 percent of the State’s annual budget to education and health, opined that such feat would brighten the future of its citizenry.

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Five corpers kidnapped on way to camp in Akwa Ibom and Rivers States



On Wednesday, unknown gunmen kidnapped five members of the National Youth Service Corps who were travelling to their orientation camps in Akwa Ibom and Rivers states. Two other passengers on the bus conveying the corps members were also kidnapped.


The fresh graduates and the other victims were travelling from Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, to Rivers and Akwa Ibom states where they were billed to undertake their three-week NYSC orientation, when they kidnapped on the Owerri-Port Harcourt Expressway and taken to the Umuapu forest in the Ohaji/Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State.


Briefing journalists after the victims were rescued by the police, the Commissioner of Police in charge of the Imo State Police Command, Dasuki Galadanchi, said the kidnappers established contact with the families of the corps members and demanded N5m ransom. The CP gave the names of the corps members as Abiola Temitope, Olubisi Adekanmi, Jose Temitayo, Folarin Opeyemi and Shonibare Ademola.


Other victims were identified as Leonard Uzondu and Raymond Ojodahe. The CP said, “The victims were travelling from Ibadan to Port Harcourt. Five out of the seven of them are prospective corps members. They were on their way to the NYSC orientation camps in Rivers and Akwa Ibom states for the three weeks camping.


“They were kidnapped around 5am on Wednesday at Umuapu, on the Owerri-Port-Harcourt Expressway. The kidnappers took them to a forest and dispossessed them of all their belongings, including money, phones, ATM cards and voter cards. They compelled them to call their relatives at home to speak to them. Immediately contact was established, they instilled fear in the parents and demanded N5m for their freedom.”


The CP explained that through intelligence gathering, the operatives of the Counter Terrorism Unit of the command were alerted.  He said, “The operatives went into the bush and on sighting the officers, the kidnappers abandoned their victims and fled. We rescued them unhurt, but the hoodlums made away with their valuables. This is part of the dividends of community policing. I urge Imo State residents to keep sharing information with the police. We cannot do it alone.”


Galadanchi said he had ordered investigation into the incident with a view to arresting the fleeing suspects.  One of the victims, Abiola, said, “They stopped our bus and ordered us at gunpoint to follow them into the forest. They were five with guns and machetes.


“In the bush, they took our belongings except our credentials and ordered us to call our parents. They made a demand of N5m, but they later brought it down to N3m. They ordered us to close our eyes. They were even quarrelling on how to share our personal belongings which they took from us. It was in the process that the police intervened and they abandoned us and ran away.”

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Police arrest 2 girls who were allegedly plotting to kill classmates in ritual



Two Florida middle school students were arrested on Tuesday after they allegedly planned to murder their classmates as a part of a violent satanic ritual that involved drinking their victims’ blood, police said.

Authorities at Bartow Middle School in Bartow, Florida, said two girls — ages 11 and 12 — were about to carry out the deadly ritual on Tuesday afternoon. A staff member, however, caught them hiding in a school bathroom with several weapons, according to police.

Investigators said the girls had a goblet, knives and several other weapons. When asked to explain the items, the girls told the school principal they were planning to murder at least 15 classmates who entered the restroom as a part of the ritual, according to Bartow Police Chief Joe Hall.

They were allegedly waiting for “smaller kids” that they could easily overpower and kill, Hall told “Good Morning America.”

“They had a strong belief in satanism and they believed the more people they killed the faster they would go to hell,” Hall said. “They were looking for easy targets that they could attack with little or no resistance.”

Authorities did not disclose many details about the juvenile suspects. But police said they’d been planning the ritual since the past weekend. They were both charged with conspiracy to commit murder and it was unclear if they had obtained lawyers.

“There was essentially no reaction from either of these two girls. They were not happy. They were not sad,” Hall said. “I would describe them as carefree and nonchalant about the process.”

Investigators said they recovered text messages in which the girls allegedly discussed the details of the attack. They intended to eat the victims’ flesh, place their body parts by the school’s front entrance and kill themselves once it was over, police said.

“I can’t say that I’ve ever seen anything like this,” Hall said. “The fact is that we had other students that heard a rumor and reported that information.”

The school said it had beefed up security ahead of the horrifying discovery.

As a precautionary measure, extra law enforcement officers would be on campus this week.

There were no injuries reported as a result of the thwarted plot, officials said.

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Liberian students celebrate as President George Weah declares Education is free at Public Universities (Video)



There was massive celebration at the University of Liberia as President George Weah  declared that the university and all other public universities in the country tuition-free.

The 52-year-old made the announcement today during his visit to the University of Liberia and also took to his Facebook page to announce the news to the world.


After making the joyful announcement, the president also promised that he would make University education free in the country and make Liberia an example to other African nations.

In a statement made on his official Facebook page, the president wrote: “Today, I am excited to announce that I have declared the University of Liberia and all other public universities in Liberia Tuition-free for all undergraduates.”

Watch the announcent video below.

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