Where is our equal right to education?

Category: Opinion | Posted date: 2019-11-24 18:58:23 | Posted by: Mercy-Babs News


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The action and body language of the government on education is edging off the children of the downtrodden from the corridor of education


Where is our equal right to education?

"Education is the most powerful tool which you can use to change the world.”- Nelson Mandela.


Gone are the days when education seemed to be part of the fundamental human rights of every citizen—an era where everybody was encouraged to acquire free and qualitative education in Nigeria. A time when government saw and made quality and standard education a priority rather than the money-making venture education of today has turned to.
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It is so pathetic that those who enjoyed the “right to education” are now those that are inflicting pains on Nigerian Students as a result of the exorbitant fees being charged in Nigerian schools. Yet, without iota of doubt, it is a known fact that the bedrock of development of any nation lies in its education sector.


In a few past old eras of government, Nigeria recorded tremendous growth as a result of equal right to quality education. The eras saw and took education and its sector as important as the hallmark of leadership. And the products of education of the few old eras are indeed the leaders of today even as they are almost ‘out of age’, they hold tightly to the country’ stakes.


Today, baffling hike in tuition and other related fees in our tertiary institutions are now the order of the day. Many students have dropped out of schools while some female students have resorted to being Queens of Night (PROSTITUTES) to manage their education through.


Dear reader, how can we tell the parent whose minimum wage is under ₦18,000 and with two or three grown up children to pay almost ₦105,000 charges for fresh students of LAUTECH and UNIOSUN, and with about ₦330,000 total tuition charges for fresh law students? Definitely, such parent would have to go extra miles to pay the money so as not to abort the admission of the child.
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So, my fellow Nigerians, where is the right to education? UNIBEN and UNILAG are also there with their exorbitant charges. If not recently reduced, no less-privileged parents could afford ₦250,000 LASU fee. Yet in the midst of the economic quagmire Nigerian citizens are currently battling with, the authority of the University of Ibadan (UI) recently announced the increment of acceptance fee from ₦20,000 to ₦30,000 with the rumour of an attempt to increase the tuition fee also. Where is the encouragement and right to education in this?


The Polytechnics/Monotechnics and Colleges of Education are also systematically engaging in extortion of money from the students through exorbitant charges of POST-UTME, selling of handouts and sudden increment of fees. The case of Rufus Giwa polytechnic, Owo where fresh students pay nothing less than N90,000 as charges for the admitted students are also a clearly defined mission of making education which is supposed to be a right a privilege.


In recent time, the former governor of Oyo State, Sen. Isiaq Abiola Ajimobi in a media chat said the proposed Oyo State Technical University was not for the poor but the rich. If one of our leaders could say this statement, definitely, the right by all to education is now a privilege. The action and body language of the government on education is edging off the children of the downtrodden from the corridor of education.


In Nigeria, education sector is now one of the lucrative revenue generating wing, living it core purposes behind. Meanwhile, the terrible hike of fees in the institutions does still not stop sudden experiences of unending strikes and emergency breaks ravaging and killing education. As anxious the authorities of the schools are to make money so they are very insensitive to the plight of the staffs, students and parents. Little wonder today’s products of Nigerian education is as worst as anything else.
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This is a challenge to all stakeholders in the education sector, including the student leaders. There is need to team up and drive away the cankerworm that has eaten deep into the fabric of our education sector. It is a collective task to make education a “RIGHT” back in Nigeria.
Let’s rise up to the challenge.


The task to collectively re-position and redeem education sector must be done by all. Let us all raise our voices against this problem—all of us are victims of it because we all have a collective future as a nation.

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Olayinka Olalekan Popoola 

olaolayinka56@gmail.com 

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