FOMWAN decries poor funding of education in Nigeria
The Federation of Muslim Women’s Associations in Nigeria (FOMWAN) has berate the underfunding of the educational system which is described as bane of standard learning and provision of quality leaders in the country.
The Muslim women group, at a communiqué issued at the end of its 17th National FOMWAN Education Summit at Ade Super Hotel Akure, Ondo State, recommended that the Government should earmark 26 per cent budgetary allocation to education, in line with the recommendation of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
The communiqué jointly signed by its National Amirah Hajiya Amina Omoti and the Chairperson, National Education Committee, Dr Lateefa M. Durosinmi said this funding level would improve the quality of education and facilitate access for the seven million out of school children.
It stated: “The persistent under-funding of education at all levels over the years through inadequate budgetary allocations at the Federal, State and Local Government levels has resulted into inefficient service delivery in the Education sector with its attendant consequences of poor learning outcomes among learners, inadequate infrastructures and loss of confidence among stakeholders in the sector.
“FOMWAN laments the little participation of Civil Society Organizations in the preparation and monitoring of the Federal, State and Local Government Budgets, especially education budgets. We therefore recommend the full participation of Civil Society Organizations in budget tracking to ensure that the amount budgeted is released timely and is judiciously used for project implementation.
“The group decries the destructive effects of corruption on the education sector as indicated by poor quality school infrastructure, recruitment of unqualified teachers especially in rural areas and uncompleted school buildings by contractors in collaboration with government officials. Thus Corruption has caused the government and people colossal loss of resources but has also denied millions of children their right to education.
“To curb these wastages and improve Nigeria of meeting the sustainable development programs on Education, FOMWAN calls on parents and other stakeholders to actively monitor school projects in their Communities to ensure value for money,” it stated.
The group acknowledged that the current economic recession has made it impossible for government to fund education alone. In the light of the above, we wish to underscore the critical role stakeholders can play to salvage the schools. Therefore, FOMWAN calls on all education stakeholders at all levels to rally round government and contribute significantly towards the sustainability of the schools in their communities.
It however raised concerns about the little or no support received by the Inspectorate/Quality Assurance Departments in the education sector for effective monitoring of teaching and learning in schools, thereby breeding redundancy among the staffs, and laxity at the school level.
“To make the Inspectorate/Quality Assurance result-oriented, FOMWAN recommends the adequate funding of the units as well as appropriate staff training by the Government. We also call on the Quality Assurance Department to consider the adoption of the participatory monitoring approach by including Communities in the school monitoring exercises,” it stated.
The group also fault the non-challant attitude of most Muslims towards the funding of education despite the Islamic injunction making the acquisition of knowledge mandatory on all Muslims, men and women.
Wealthy Muslims are therefore enjoined to take up the challenge of funding education to combat ignorance, poverty and underdevelopment among the Ummah.
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