The Oyo State government, on Thursday, conducted the final interview to select 100 candidates for the Nigeria-Sao Tome Scholarship scheme.
The Executive Assistant (Administration) to Governor ‘Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, Rev. Idowu Ogedengbe, disclosed this while speaking at the Head of Service Conference Room, Secretariat, Agodi, Ibadan, the venue of the interview for the applicants.
He said: “As you are all aware, we started the process for the selection of indigent 100-Level students in Nigerian universities, who are from Oyo State, some couple of weeks ago. We started with a Computer Based Test and following the conduct of the CBT, we came up with a cut-off mark of 52 per cent.
“Basically, the requirement of the Nigerian- Sao Tome Joint Development Authority is that we should have the selected candidates in the ratio of 60 male to 40 female. So, we considered that in the course of fixing the cut-off mark and we discovered that quite a number of the male performed better than the female. But in order to ensure that we carry everybody along, we set a cut-off mark equally at 52 per cent.
“So, today, the people who are here for the final interview are among the 160 students that we invited and, at the end of the day, we are going to reduce them to 100.
“It was a keenly-contested CBT and it is also going to be an interview session that we expect to bring out the best; the most qualified out of them.
“We are looking at the level of their intelligence and the parents’ source of income. If your parents are well to do and they can afford sending you to school, it is okay but we would rather want those whose parents cannot afford their educational pursuit to be among the 100 selected candidates.
“That is the point we are and, hopefully at the end of this exercise, we would have concluded the whole process of selection. We want it to be something that is well-done.
“Out of the over 700 hundred students that sat for the CBT, we only invited 160 based on the cut-off mark.”
He added that the state believes “strongly that those who will finally be chosen to benefit from the scholarship scheme will be those who are indigent students; who really need the support and who have also shown a great level of diligence and commitment to their studies.
“We believe if they are given an opportunity like this, they will make best use of it, which would also affect our economy for good.”