Petroleum & Natural Gas
Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN)

National Essay Competition 2022

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About The Competition

The PENGASSAN National Essay Competition is a stimulating, encouraging and social responsibility initiative of PENGASSAN to drive the development of creative writing amongst secondary school students. It is billed to generate interest in writing amongst secondary school students at a time when many are being dissuaded from academic and writing proficiency. It is a strategic initiative to drive creativity, deep reflective and critical thought, and increase in the ability to leverage yet unexplored areas of our day-to-day life.

Essay writing is a tool to help students learn how to formulate and defend their own arguments and improve their overall writing skills. Furthermore, it serves as a tool to improve communication and creativity, sharpen memory, and improve health and wellbeing. Writing is also important in improving self-expression and helps in deep and critical thinking. By writing, a student becomes a better writer.

Important Dates

Registration & Submission Opens September 22nd 2022
Registration & Submission Closes October 9th 2022
Date for Live Essay (Phase 2) October 14th 2022
Award Presentation October 19th 2022

The main aim of the PENGASSAN National Essay Competition is to develop interest in literacy by exposing participants to the benefits and rewards of excellent writing. It passes the message that you can be successful as a writer. Writing is a skilled and valued profession, and we want to drive this social awareness amongst secondary school students. Some of the most celebrated and successful Nigerians are writers. Examples are the late Chinua Achebe, Prof Wole Soyinka and Chimamanda Adichie. We want to use this competition as a stimulus to develop the desire and encourage students to write.

This competition will enable students engage their creative abilities and writing skills and hence grow and develop their writing abilities, and dream beyond winning an essay competition. Through this essay competition, PENGASSAN wants to inspire a new set of teen writers who would go on to dominate the world stage.

1 Akinrelere Karinmoluwa Boluwatife First Trinity College, Ofada, Ogun State Female SS1
2 Eniifoluwa Adeniyi Second Corona College, Agbara, Lagos State Female SS1
3 Leslie Omenike Bonnet Third St. Augustine's College, Kaduna, Kaduna State Female SS1
4 Azua Stephanie Wueseter Fourth Demonstration Secondary School, ABU, Zaria Female SS1
5 Bassey Utibe Emmanual Fifth Rayfield International Secondary School, Akwa Ibom, Akwa Ibom State Male SS1
6 Fajana Chidera Eriayo Sixth Trinity College, Ofada, Ogun State Female SS1
1 Peace-Shaibu Georgia Seluchi Temilayo First Bereton Montessori Sec. School Port Harcourt, Rivers State Female JSS1
2 Francis Emmanuel Chukwuecherem Second He Reins Academy Int., Ebonyi, Ebonyi State Male JSS1
3 Usman Wunti Abubakar Third Bereton Montessori Sec. School, Port Harcourt, Rivers State Male JSS1
4 Ojochemionu Ibioku Victor-Akor Fourth Newlife Baptise School, Port Harcourt, Rivers State Male JSS1
5 Zugwai Terah Ezeikel Fifth Kids Window High School, Gombe, Gombe State Male JSS1
6 Ajuwa Jesse Kuro Sixth Beleny School, Bayelsa, Bayelsa State Male JSS1

Essay Topics

The competition's essay topics by category


(Category 1)

Stage 2: Different types of energy sources used in Nigeria and their impact on human health and the environment


(Category 2)

Stage 2: Illegal petroleum refining, health and environmental impact in Nigeria


Winners will be awarded prizes based on their category

First Prize



₦ 750,000


₦ 1,000,000

Second Prize



₦ 500,000


₦ 750,000

Third Prize



₦ 300,000


₦ 500,000

Consolation Prize

(4th - 6th Position)


₦ 100,000


₦ 100,000


Competition Guidelines, eligibility, and method of delivery

Method of Delivery

The entire competition will be held online.

All interested participants are required to register and submit entries on the website. Registration and submission will take place simultaneously. Registration and submission of entries must not exceed stated end date as website will cease to accept submissions afterwards. All participants will write hand-written essays and submit electronically based on the given topics.

In respect to age ranges for the 2 categories, participants are required to submit a copy of their birth certificate for verification.


After scoring, our judges will select the 18 most successful candidates in each category (3 from each geopolitical zone). Success will be determined by our pre-determined scoring criteria.

These selected candidates will then partake in a live online essay writing competition. The winners from this live essay competition will be rewarded according to performance. The categories of winners are
1st place
2nd place
3rd place
4th - 6th places

Rules & Regulations


Both categories will be allotted different topics to write upon.
Co-authorship is not allowed.
Interested participants must be a JSS 1 or SSS1 by the start date of the new 2022/2023 academic session.

Age categorization:
JS 1 - must be between 10 - 12 years old
SS 1 - must be between 14 - 16 years old

Ages below and above each age rage are not eligible to apply even while being in the respective class.

Participants are expected to reside in one of the 36 states or the Federal Capital of Nigeria. Thus, the essay will be open to participants from every state in each geopolitical zone.

Overseas participation is not permitted.


The Essay competition will be handwritten.
The language of the essay judgment should be in English.
There are 2 categories for this competition:

  • Category 1: JS 1 students (new intakes)
  • Category 2: SS 1 students (resuming students)

The Word limit for both categories are:

  • SS1: 450 Words
  • JS1: 200 Words

There are 2 stages in the competition.

Stage 1 is the general stage where every participant for each category submits an essay based on our given topics for grading. Each participant is required to research his or her topic and write accordingly. Please note that plagiarism is an automatic disqualification. Participants have a total of 2 weeks in this stage. Check important dates for timelines.

Stage 2 will feature only the most successful participants in the competition. A total number of 3 candidates per geopolitical zone per category will be contacted to participate in this stage. This stage will be a one day live online essay writing.