By Ikenna Aniagboso
Anambra State continues to record excellent results in education as 10 year-old Ifunanya Nwanegbo, a pupil of Mabel Divine International School, Nnewi, Anambra State, has become the best young mathematician in Nigeria by winning a prestigious national mathematics competition.
Miss Nwanegbo defeated no fewer than 200,000 pupils from schools across the federation to win the 18th national mathematics competition with a total score of 98.132%. The competition was organized by the Nigerian Tulip International College, Abuja.
Miss Ifunanya and Anambra State received N400,000 for winning the first prize and a full scholarship, while her school received a photocopier machine.
In a video which has now gone viral online, little Ifunanya displayed rare confidence when she said that she had minor difficulties in solving just a few questions in the competition. Those minor issues took a fractional 1.8% from what would have been a perfect 100% score for Anambra’s Nigeria’s young mathematics champion.
The State Commissioner for Basic Education, Prof Kate Omenugha, said that she expected nothing less from Anambra pupils participating in any national and international educational competition, noting that the young pupil’s brilliance and confidence reflected the standard and quality of education in Anambra State and the values which the State government under Gov Willie Obiano has imbibed in the children.
Prof Omenugha lauded Ifunanya’s coach and teacher, Mr Emmanuel Egwuchukwu, for his dedication and commitment.
“This is the spirit that has kept education in Anambra State on the part of excellence and has made our teachers and pupils winners in several national and international competitions”, she enthused .
Ifunanya’s mother, Mrs Nwanegbo, expressed gratitude to God for giving her daughter the knowledge and confidence to compete most effectively in the competition which described as one “for true champions”.
The Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment in the state, Mr C Don Adinuba, congratulated the Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano on numerous awards which the state has won in Nigeria and abroad as a result of his administration’s policies and huge investments in education.
He expressed great delight over Ifunanya’s stellar performance, saying it is “consistent with the performance of schoolchildren from the state in national and international competitions like the 2018 Technovation which pupils of Regina Pacis Model Girls School, Onitsha, won in Silicon Valley, United States, on August 9, 2018; the 2019 International Festival of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics held in Tunisia from February 21 to 27, 2019, where St John’s Secondary School, Alor, won the Bronze, the 2021 Global Internet Competition which Queen of the Rosary secondary School, Onitsha, clinched the Gold Medal, in addition to the 2019 World Teachers Day in Abuja organized on October 9 by the Federal Ministry of Education, The Presidency and the Nigeria Union of Teachers with the state winning four of the available 24 prizes whereas most states didn’t get any and the few which received did not get more than one each, to say nothing about the fact that the state went home with two of the four vehicles donated by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“This is not to overlook the fact that Loretto Special Science School at Adazi Nnukwu won the first position in the 2016 assessment of schools by the Federal Ministry of Education in the senior secondary schools category while Queen of the Rosary College, Onitsha, won the first prize in the junior secondary schools category and Clement Okondo of the Abagana Central School took the first position in the primary school category.
“There are many other examples we can cite about Anambra’s excellence in education like Grundtvig International School winning the Private School of the Year award from the Nigeria Union of Teachers in 2020, but time wouldn’t permit.
“Ifunanya, our emerging Chike Obi, has made us proud. She and pupils like her will continue to perform brilliantly under the excellent policies of the Willie Obiano-led administration in Anambra State, even as the administration nears its end.
Anambra and Nigeria’s mathematics champion, Miss Ifunanya Nwanegbo, won a cash prize of N400,000.00, a full scholarship by the Nigerian Tulip International College and a brand new photocopier for her school.