MEET THE BoT ⬇⬇⬇⬇
Professor (Pastor) Chukwuemeka Eze Onukaogu, the current Chair Board of Trustees Reading Association of Nigeria (RAN), is a retired Professor of English Language, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria.
He was the President of RAN from 1999 to 2002. He was the Chair of the International Development Committee Africa (IDAC) from 2003 to 2007, chairing the Pan African Reading for All Confonerence in Uganda, Swaziland and Ghana. IDAC is an affiliate of the International Reading – now Literacy – Assocition (ILA) that implements ILA literacy blueprints in Africa.
He was awarded the prestigious Elva Knight Research Grant of the International Reading Association(IRA )for his develpment of the 4P’s Reading Instruction model for use in promoting literacy instruction in develping countries. Apart from being awarded the Reading Research Fellowship of the IRA, Professor Onukaogu has attended and presented in many international Literacy Conferences in the US, The UK, Norway and Africa. He has also published extensively in many literacy journals and books.
He pioneered the development of the Literacy Enhancement and Achievement Program (LEAP) which since 2004 is being used extensively in promoting litetacy teaching and learning across the school and life curricula. LEAP which insists that Literacy is pivotal to print-based education and so is not discipline specific but descplines inclusive is an amalgam of teacher specificity and learner specitficity giving rise to learing inclusiveness where the whats, the whys, the whos and the hows of the literacy orchestra are adequately catered for. His monumental work in implementing LEAP in Osun, Ekiti and Anambra states of Nigeria has received national and international acclaim.
Professor Onukaogu has since 1995 been intensively involved in promoting literacy empowerment among many Nigerian prison inmates so that on completing their prison sentence they can be fully integrated into their immediate and wider communities.
He was the founding Director of the Reading, Writing and Elocution Center of the Joseph Ayo Babalola University, Ikeji-Arakeji, Osun State Nigeria.
Mrs. Irene Mbanefo is a seasoned Educator, who was pioneer Principal to 2 Model schools in Abuja. Formerly a presenter/moderator of weekly television and radio programs; including “Schools Challenge” (NTA Channel 5), “How it works” (NTA Channel 5) and Schools Quiz Programs (Aso Radio 93.5) all under the Mamser regime.
Astute and well versed in Human Resource Management, she headed the Planning, Research and Statistics Division of the Education Resource Centre of the F.C.T.; that produced the very newsy, pictorial and glossy F.C.T. Education quarterly newsletter, other information handbooks as well as doubling as the image maker of the centre in a public relations capacity.
A retired Director of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (FGN), she was involved in initiating projects/programs from policy directives, organizing advocacy programs with the National action committee on Read campaign, for taking Reading to all levels including the grass root.
She managed the planning, researching, sourcing of information/news, documentation, collation, publication and dissemination of same within the Education sector. Also represented the Federal Ministry of Education Was on the Governing councils of the College of Education special, Oyo; University of Technology, Akure; National Mathematical Centre, Abuja and the Federal University, Oye-Ekiti. Mrs. Mbanefo also chaired the Planning Reference committee on the Joint consultative committee on Education (JCCE) of the National Council on Education (NCE).
Irene was the 14th President, Reading Association of Nigeria RAN from October 2016 – October 2018 and hosted the 10th Pan African Literacy for All Conference (PALFA) in Abuja, August 2017.
Currently, the Project Manager for the RAN–NEIplus (Northern Education Initiative Plus) Project (Sokoto & Bauchi States). She currently has membership of the following: RAN Board of Trustees, Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), International Literacy Association (ILA), Whole Language Umbrella (WLU), A fellow of the Institute of Corporate Administration of Nigeria (CAN); whose abilities were recognised for organizational administration, efficiency in resource management and visionary leadership, Member Nigerian Institute of Management (NIM) and a member of the Girls Guide Society of Nigeria.
She is an avid reader and author, a golfer and has a flair for creative sewing. Mrs. Mbanefo is happily married to her Engineer; and is both a mother and grandmother.
Stella Ikhesor Ekpe, PhD, is a member of the International Literacy Association, and has been a member of the Reading Association of Nigeria since 1990. She has served in the Cross River Branch as Treasurer (1990 – 1999); Vice Chairperson (2003 – 2005) and Chairperson (2005 – 2007). Before becoming President, she had served as National Director of Membership (1997 – 1999) and Vice President (2016 – 2018). Stella has organized, co-facilitated and participated in several TOT workshops for parents, and for primary (and secondary) school teachers, presented papers at RAN’s biennial conferences and the Pan African Literacy for All conferences, as well as co-authored journal articles and book chapters on literacy and reading, iincluding (titles only): Fostering positive attitudes towards reading: Insights from the literacy autobiographies of some young Nigerian adults; Nearly everything you can do with Leo in the Library; Teaching phonics in Nigerian primary schools.; Reading in the content areas: A brief review; Picture story as a creative connection between reading and writing: The Nigerian experience; Beginning reading at the grassroots: The experience in some fishing communities in Nigeria; Something is happening here: Literacy immersion for early intervention; A micro-survey of gender awareness among some Nigerian primary school teachers; Deconstructing Facebook posts for sustainable democratic development in Africa: A Critical Literacy approach. The Budding Author series of young persons writing for young persons was inspired by the creative writing efforts of Nigerian children attending the Vacation Reading Programme organized regularly by the Cross River Branch of the Association between 1991 and 2007. The initiative has witnessed the co-authoring of a series of RAN Little Books in which the budding authors provided the storylines: Our own haiku poems; Nta leaves Ubaha; King I-did-not-become-rich-to-help-the-poor; Cocaine dealer ( Ugbe visits Otutu, Otutu is banished, Edem is a graduate, Edem goes to jail); Journey of a stolen fish (a Big Book pack). As a contribution to meeting the challenge of a dearth of reading materials for children, our use of authentic content in literacy materials production, and our search for means of funding the enterprise remain a preoccupation. Stella enjoys walking and spending time in reading interactions with the children in her adopted community, where she has set up an adhoc reading centre in the neighbourhood