By Kehinde Oluwatayo
If Nigeria is to have a better future, a state of emergency must be declared in her educational sector.
Pro-Chancellor and Chairman Governing Council, Federal University, Lafia, Nasarawa State, Basorun Seinde Arogbofa declared this in his remark at Quiz Competition for Public schools in Akoko by Worthy Purpose Foundation, a subsidiary of Metida Wellness
He said failure of the past leaders in Nigeria to pursue education with the required vigour like late Chief Obafemi Awolowo and Chief Adekunle Ajasin is the reason for the free fall in the standard of education
On the UNESCO recommendation of 26 percent budget allocation for education which was neglected by African leaders, Arogbofa, who is the Chairman, All Nigeria Confederation of Pro-Chancellors said Awolowo and Ajasin pursued free education at all levels and aspired to reach UNESCO recommendation with qualitative education as their goal.
This, he said led to the upsurge of great men of letters and education, captains of industry, great men in law, in medicine and other aspects of human endeavours in the southwest region of the country
“To underscore the importance of today’s event, let me remind us that the UNESCO recommended that governments all over the world should allocate about 26 percent of its annual budget to Education.
“But most countries do not adhere to this, hence the free fall of education especially in Africa and particularly in Nigeria. An exception, however, was the Government of Chief Obafemi Awolowo and that of Chief Adekunle Ajasin who pursued free education at all levels and aspired to reach that UNESCO standard. Quantity and, to a large extent, quality in education was their goal and they got it.
“But our inability to continue from where they stopped is largely responsible for the decay in our society, and other social malaise which is now the order of the day as no nation can grow beyond the level of education given to its citizens.
In Nigeria when compared with other sectors today, just a token is allocated to education, and even that token is sometimes on paper. We must therefore declare a state of emergency on education if we are to have a better tomorrow.”
He commended the organiser of the quiz competition for her contributions to the development of education, saying leaders in government have been paying lip service to education and that the consequences have been the emergence of Almajiris, Boko Haram among vices.
Convener of the Foundation, Dr. (Mrs) Funmilola Williams Daudu, said students in public schools would do better if equipped with the right tools.
Dr. Daudu explained that the quiz competition was borne out of the need to revive academic excellence in public schools.
She stated that she planned to extend the programme to all the 18 local government areas of the state.
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