Former Governor of Niger State, Dr. Babandiga Aliyu, has called for governments at all levels to declare state of emergency on the education sector across the states in the country.
The former governor said that on paper, the various governments have been serious in trying to pay attention to education but in reality, there has not been the political will to do the needful.
He stated this while delivering a paper entitled: “The Place of Colleges of Education in the Development of Nigeria” at the 50th anniversary of the Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto.
Aliyu noted that no government was allocating more than 10 per cent of its annual budget to education in the country.
“The total budget in Nigeria is N13.5 trillion and the deficit built is N5.196 trillion while the debt servicing in the budget is N3.32 trillion. You deduct N8.516 trillion from N13.5 trillion, you are left with only N4.983 trillion to service all the Federal Government’s commitments including recurrent and capital services.
“The states also have their own deficits and debts to service. It is therefore, very easy to appreciate why the successive governments in Nigeria failed to reposition the education sector in general.
“It also appeared that there was deliberate de-marketing of Colleges of education by making them seem to be the last resort for those who failed in their areas of choice,” he said.
He further disclosed that this was the time for governments at all level to pay attention to education and teachers in Nigeria.
According to him: “Our country is classified as a third-world country, while the outgoing President of the United States of America, Donald Trump described it as a ‘shithole’ all because of the level of our education, our leadership selection process, its quality and the hypocrisy of the leaders, in addition to corrupt practices.”