With less than one week to the Final and Grand Finale of the 2018 Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation National Science Quiz Competition billed for October 8th-9th at the Corporate Headquarters of the corporation in Abuja, participating states are taking measures to ensure successful outing by their representatives.

Edo State, one of those presenting finalists in this year’s competition, has taken the event a notch higher with pledge by the State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, to provide the needed fulcrum that will ensure the successful outing of Alikah Joseph Ehiagwina, the state representative in the 2018 competition.

The governor, in a widely publicized statement last week, said the impressive performance by Ehiagwina, was a call on other Edo youth to apply themselves vigorously in socially approved and rewarding ventures to make their parents and the state proud.

“We will continue to provide the needed support for Edo children such as Alikah to excel academically. His performance at the state level of the competition is encouraging and goes to show that, when given the opportunity, our children can compete favourably with their peers anywhere in the world,’’ he said.

The Governor noted that the exploit also shows that much could be achieved through sustained collaboration with all stakeholders in the education sector and government’s insistence on standards. He urged the student to make the best of the opportunity offered by the NNPC and return home with the coveted trophy.

Ehiagwina, a student of Don Bosco Science Academy, Ukhun, in Esan Central Local Government Area of Edo State, emerged winner of the state category of the 2018 NNPC Science Quiz Competition with a total score of 83 per cent. He later finished second at the zonal final of the contest held in Asaba in July this yea.

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Mr. Godwin Obaseki is expected to grace the Grand Finale of the contest which holds Tuesday 9th October 2018.

Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, NNPC Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, in a release today in Abuja, said provisions had been made by the corporation to provide adequate comfort and moral boosters to the 18 whiz kids across the six geo-political zones that would lock horns in what promises to be an exciting final showdown.

Ughamadu quoted the corporation’s GMD as having expressed satisfactions with the arrangements so far made for the 2018 edition of the Competition, saying as the flagship of the corporation’s Corporate Social Responsibility Projects (CSR), NNPC would back the context with necessary resources to ensure its success and continued relevance.

The NNPC Quiz Competition was inaugurated in 2000 and limited to participants from the Niger Delta but went national in 2001. This year’s event would mark the 16th edition of the competition.

Designed mainly for students in the nation’s secondary schools, the competition has impacted positively on the intellectual attainment of young Nigerians. It has provided financial succour to successful contestants who have been placed on scholarship throughout their university education. Many of the awardees had moved on to achieve academic laurels in tertiary institutions, locally and internationally.

Fulfilling aspects of its slant, records show many of the past awardees ended up studying Science and Technology related courses in the universities. In 2010, a past winner of the competition, emerged 2nd in a contest involving others from the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) Member Countries, and Austria to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of OPEC.

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Several years after its inauguration, the horizon of the competition soars.

Among the main objectives of the competition are:

· To implement a core element of NNPC Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) package

· To promote Science education in the country

· To encourage students in the study of Science and Technology related subjects

· To prepare students for promotional and qualifying examinations

· To build friendship amongst the participating students

· To develop students’ competitive spirit

· To break down long-held stereotypes and engendering a better sense of national being in participating students, through the cross-cultural interactions that the contest offers

· To provide a platform for enlightening the students and the public on the activities of NNPC.