Organizational Overview


The FCT Education Secretariat was created by virtue of Presidential Order No. 1 of 2004 as a Mandate Secretariat with the responsibility of formulation and implementation of policies on education in all its ramifications in the FCT..
The FCT Education Secretariat has the mandate of ensuring that education policies emanating from the Federal Ministry of Education are domesticated to the needs of FCT as they concern provision of access to education and effective delivery of the national school curriculum.

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It is one of the seven Mandate Secretariats of FCT Administration created to replace the defunct Education Department of FCDA, which had existed from 1976 -2004. It is to the FCT what a Ministry of Education is to a state, and is headed by The Secretary for Education (a Special Assistant to the Minister of FCT). The Secretariat oversees and monitors activities of the Departments, Boards and Agencies in the FCT Education Sector. It is located at Area 11 Garki Abuja, in the Minister's block.

Education Secretariat like all other mandate secretariats did not just emerge without a background, it is the culmination of education activities that started as early as the creation of the Federal capital territory and even before the territory. At the time of creation of FCT in 1976 there was no single secondary school in the territory, only 55 primary schools were in existence. In addition there were other forms of non-formal education, especially the traditional religion that emphasized social responsibility, spiritual and moral values and other ethics of good conduct. The primary schools were set up during the Murtala - Obasanjo Military Administration under the Universal Primary Education (UPE) programme. These schools apparently were managed by the neighbouring states from which FCT was carved out along with the school. Hence with the creation of the capital territory, the schools no longer had any central coordinating system until 1979. Hence coordinated employment in education started in 1979 with Dr. Jacob Uhumwango an Assistant Chief Education Officer. The first school established under FCDA was a staff school at the field base in Suleja meant to cater for the children of pioneer staff of the new territory.

Subsequently, by 1990 a management structure for education started emerging and eventually a small Education Services Unit was established within the Administration Department of the FCTA to take charge of education matters. It was later elevated to a division under the headship of Mr. Aboki Zhawa (now, Dr. Zhawa) who had joined the Education Services Units in June 1980. The earliest administrative structure of the then Education Division was as follows:

i. Primary Education Section
ii. Educational services Section
iii. Planning and Development
iv. Inspectorate Section

As the new federal capital developed, with more infrastructure, housing and other facilities more residents were drawn to the territory and this stimulated increased demand for social services, including schools. In particular, more civil servants poured into the city with their families, and most of them looked up to government to provide schools for their children. This was when the decision was taken to upgrade the former Education Division into a full-fledged Department of Education headed by a substantive Director of Education, Alhaji Adamu Shuaibu, now late, who reported directly to the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja at the time.

The Department of Education then had the following Division added to the already existing sections which were upgraded to Division:

i. Schools and Higher Education added to the Schools Management Services Division
ii. Science and Technology Division
iii. School Sports Division
iv. Administration division
v. Education Resource center

The following Boards also became part of the Education Department at the time:

i. Primary Education Board
ii. Agency for Mass Education
iii. FCT College of Education

There were also some special Units viz:

i. Nomadic Education Unit
ii. French Language Center
iii. Monitoring Unit on the National Policy on Education

With the coming of Mallam Nasir El Rufai as the Minister of FCT in 2003 under the Obasanjo administration, the Territory witnessed major reforms that never took place since its inception. Part of these reforms was the re-structuring of the FCT administration which saw the scrapping of the Ministry of the Federal Capital Territory (MFCT) and reversal to the original FCT Administration system. In the process, Secretariats were created to replace the existing Departments in the social Services Sector of the FCT. The new Secretariats were made largely autonomous and each is headed by a Secretary who is on the rank of Special Assistant to the President. The establishment of Education Secretariat in 2005 launched FCT into the status of a state such that the Secretariat is nationally taken as if it were a Ministry of Education with the mandate to provide qualitative, accessible and affordable education to the residents of the FCT through concerted efforts of agencies and departments under the Secretariat.

At the time of inception the Secretariat had just an Administration and Finance Department at the Headquarters, headed by a director, who is answerable to the Secretary for Education.

Providing Quality Education for Residents of the Federal Capital Territory