Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State, yesterday, blamed the rot in the Nigerian education sector on poor leadership over the years, saying Nigerian leaders must act with courage, conviction and be decisive to stem the rot in the sector.
Oshiomhole, at the 20th National Economic Summit in Abuja, said: “Leadership is about courage, conviction and being able to act. We need our political leadership to go back to the basics and not the symbolism we currently witness.
“At the heart of the question is the issue of leadership. From the 1950s to 60s, Nigeria produced the best brains. I think as the quality of the Nigerian leadership deteriorated from the days of the military up to the moment that we got our priorities wrong that we began to see the kind of rot that characterised our schools.
“The way forward is for us, the leaders to go back to the basics and ask ourselves what the issues are.
“There was a time in this country when students threatened to shut down their schools and the authorities had to engage them not to boycott classes. We have moved from that era to one in which our universities were shut for over six months and it was not an issue. The response of the Nigerian elite is to find privatised solution to the problem.
“If we don’t have fuel in the country for six months, Abuja will not be at peace and Edo State will not be at peace, but Polytechnics have been shut for over six months and it is not featuring in this discussion.”
The governor said that returning to the basics would mean checking the quality of the teachers, who are to impart knowledge, saying: “In Edo State, we have built beautiful schools far more attractive than the private schools, but the missing link is the quality of teachers.
“And to know who is a teacher, we must do assessment test for everybody who is a tutor in the classroom. And there are challenges and that is where leadership comes in.” (Vanguard)
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