Nigeria at 58: a look at the Educational Development by an N-power volunteer
By now, the Nigerian educational system is supposed to have reached an unassailable level of global competitiveness. But now, we still have in our tertiary institutions, students who cannot defend their grade, students who are only intelligent on paper but are intellectually poor, students who go from one office to the other begging for scores, students who prostitute for scores. In Nigeria, we have numerous first class holders begging for employment in the labour market.
We still have people quintessentially gifted with knowledge, but it does not really reflect in their academic credentials because the academic environment has been polluted with sadistic lecturers who discredit merit and applaud incompetence. There are people highly gifted with knowledge but are there in the village, dying of empty stomach. These people have the brain but are greatly resisted by the intense inertia of poverty and abandonment.
Today, Nigerian educational music is lacking resonance and overtone and is consequently directed towards a damping vibration. Students and the future scholars lack what is educationally referred to as REINFORCEMENT. There is practically no governmental encouragement. When Nigerian footballers win a match, they are given Millions of dollars as encouragement to do more, yet we find it difficult to win the world cup.
Every year, Big brother Niger guys are awarded with millions by the senators and Governors. When someone sings a song or pretends to be mad, they give millions as encouragement. But after a quiz competition, students are given Big dictionaries and mathematical sets as award. This is apparently and palpably laughable. After the cowbell mathematics quiz, winners are given packs of powdered milk as consolations, but the same cowbell company can spend fortunes in designing the football pitch with their logo plus other financial expenses.
Now, what on earth will encourage students of this category to take their education serious? What will boost their academic effervescence? Nothing. But who will reignite this latent spark of educational motivation in Nigeria; the giant of Africa? Our political leaders, hear me out! You are not doing well in the area of Education. How could you be so stingy in paying the teachers, the most poorly paid civil servants?
How could you be so unfair to the educational sector when disbursing allocations? How could you allow the educational system to be a lab rat in terms of poor curriculum planning, development and implementation? Education sector gave rise to other sectors but during budgetary allocation, Nigerian Government keep education among the least priorities. Nigerian government wants to have a strong building when the foundation is weak. What an irony!
Therefore, as we celebrate our 58th independence day today, our law makers, executive council and the Jury should have a rethink especially as it concerns copying other countries. When we want to copy america, we should do that holistically so that it would not become a problem to us. If we cannot copy america, then let us design and define our destiny ourselves without being distracted. We think we would be like America but we only copy their political system but fail to copy the american ideology of education.
If you want to copy a country that is extremely developed and marvelously civilized, you must copy them from the ideological 'chromosome'. But why won't America be great when they prioritize the future than the present; a country that can invest in the future; a country that can save money for a 20100 year plan for the unborn children. But if I may ask, what do we use our oil money to do? To pay salaries? We say Nigerian children are the leaders of tomorrow but Nigerian government refused to invest in the future of the children. What an ironyl.
Education is power only when you have the right curricular AK-47 and know where the trigger is.
Happy independence day Fellow Nigerians.
Igwe Anselm Onyekachi.
IMO state, Nigeria.