Imaguero College Emerges Winner of 2024 NEPL/Seplat JV PEARLs Quiz

Imaguero College in Benin, Edo State, won the 13th edition of the NEPL/Seplat JV PEARLs Quiz competition, receiving Ten Million Naira (N10 million) for a school project and a scholarship of One Hundred Thousand Naira (N100,000) for each of the three participating students.

This is the first time a public school from the two beneficiary states of Edo and Delta has won the NEPL/Seplat Energy JV PEARLs quiz competition.

The quiz competition, an annual academic effort, seeks to encourage, inspire, and award students for their scholarship and teamwork.

The competition is divided into two stages: the test stage, where all schools take qualifying tests, and the competition stage, where eligible schools compete head-to-head until a champion is crowned.

The grand finale, held in Benin, Edo State, was attended by secondary school students from Edo and Delta states, government officials, media, and certain management members from NNPC Exploration and Production Limited (NEPL) and Seplat Energy, among others.

Obonodi Joy, an Imaguero College student, expressed her delight, saying, “There are no words to express how I feel; we are overwhelmed with joy.” I would like to thank Seplat Energy because this opportunity is an encouragement. You are building the minds of young individuals, and we cannot thank you enough.”

Marble Hill School in Asaba, Delta State, took second place, winning Five Million Naira (N5 million) for a project and a Seventy-Five Thousand Naira (N75,000) scholarship for each of the three participating students. Edo State’s Baptist High School came in third, receiving Three Million Naira (N3 million) for a project and Fifty Thousand Naira (N50,000) scholarship for each participating student.

Additionally, teachers from schools that reached the competition stage received laptops for their hard work and dedication.

Commenting on Imaguero College’s victory, Edo State Commissioner for Education, Joan Osa Oviawe, said, “On behalf of the Edo State Ministry of Education, I appreciate Seplat Energy for this wonderful initiative. It’s always great when young people have the opportunity to participate in academic contests.

“I also want to congratulate our State Secondary Education Board, the Executive Principal of the school, the teachers, and everyone involved. It has been a long journey of reforming our education system through Governor Obaseki’s Edo Best 2.0 education reform agenda, and I am elated to see our public schools come out on top.”

Delta State’s Commissioner for Works (Rural and Riverine), Charles Ehiedu Aniagwu, representing Governor Sheriff Oborevwori, praised Seplat’s efforts to promote growth and development in both states. He highlighted that Seplat’s efforts are consistent with the government’s vision, adding, “For us in Delta, this is more than a quiz competition.

Seplat is doing several things that our administration in Delta is also doing, which is ensuring that the potentials inherent in our children are refined.”

Commenting on how Imaguero College’s triumph will affect public schools, he stated, “What Imaguero has shown today is that if public schools are energised, they will do quite well. We hope this victory inspires the government to further energise our teachers and students in public schools.”

The NEPL/Seplat Energy JV PEARLs Quiz is a flagship program under Seplat Energy’s Corporate Social Investment (CSI) agenda, contributing to the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (UNDG) 4 on Quality Education. It ensures inclusive and equitable quality education for both public and private schools in Edo and Delta States, offering lifelong learning prospects to youth.

The PEARLs Quiz has also contributed to Delta and Edo States maintaining very high pass rates in external examinations such as WAEC, showcasing the significant role the competition plays in enhancing educational standards.

Emmanuel Otokhine, Base Manager, Western Asset, Seplat Energy, representing the Managing Director, Seplat West Limited, Ayodele Olatunde, reiterated Seplat Energy’s commitment to investing in the education sector.

“This is our way of helping to improve the quality of education in the region where we operate. We are involved in the whole education value chain, promoting academic excellence, encouraging scholarship, and improving teaching skills through programs like the Seplat Teachers Empowerment Program (STEP),” he said.

Owunari Tomikeimeye, Community Relations Manager, NEPL, representing the Managing Director, NEPL, Nicholas Foucast, congratulated the winners and all competitors. He also thanked Seplat Energy, the teachers, and the government for their support.

Over the past 13 years, the NEPL/Seplat JV PEARLs Quiz initiative has empowered winning secondary schools to fund structural projects such as language laboratories, computer laboratories, libraries, school buses and classroom blocks through project-based cash prizes.

More than 57,675 students have benefited from the program, with education grants provided to 108 students, over 80 of whom have graduated or are studying in various universities within the country. Additionally, 22 students have been sponsored through the undergraduate scholarship scheme, and three have undergone industrial training with Seplat Energy.

At the event, the Seplat Women’s Awesome Network (SWAN) represented by Oby Ezeoke, Senior Manager, Policy & Employee Relations, held a session guiding students on the importance of a balanced diet, physical activities, personal hygiene, and mental health.

Also, the Seplat’s Innovative Growth Network of Aspiring Leaders (SIGNAL) represented by Ochuko Ikogho, Associate Civil Engineer, steered the students on being impressionable and it various implications.

The Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Eleanor Adaralegbe, addressed the students on the importance of self-development, adding that “Outstanding science and art-based projects from various schools were also recognised and rewarded.

Seplat Energy remains committed to its educational CSI initiatives and looks forward to enhancing the scope and impact of the PEARLs Quiz in future editions.

By continuing to support and invest in the academic growth of students in Delta and Edo States, Seplat Energy aims to drive long-term sustainable development and create a brighter future for Nigeria’s youth” he declared.