Minister tasks CSOs on accurate data on out-of- school children
The Minister of State for Education, Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, has called on civil society organisations to be accurate when giving out data on out-of-school children in the country.
Nwajiuba, at the2020 national education conference, organised by the Civil Society Action Coalition on Education For All (CSACEFA) said it is important for civil society organisations to support Federal Government’s efforts at providing education for all.
The conference was organised in collaboration with the Nigeria Partnership for Education Project (NIPEP) and the World Bank.
The conference has as theme, ‘Strengthening advocacy for partnership, engagements, reforms and monitoring: A panacea for sustainable, inclusive and quality education for all.”
Nwajiuba in his remarks said, “This conference is an amalgamation of over 600 civil society organisations and what I want from you at the end of this programme is to confirm to me the accurate number of out-of-school children.
“I know that we can not have 13.2 million out of school children in the 774 local government areas. Each of those local governments does not have a minimum of 10,000 children roaming around. There would be a crisis, if that number of children were roaming about, so where is that figure coming from?
“I expect you to confirm the number of public and private primary and secondary schools we have in every local government, so we can start from there. I know you can do this for us as we need partnership to get these children back to school,” he added.
National moderator, CSACEFA, Kabiru Aliyu said the conference was aimed at advocating and partnering for quality and inclusive education for all.
Aliyu, who was represented by the zonal coordinator in the south-east, Mr Godwin Arua added that lack of partnership leading to unhealthy competition among others was one of the challenges hampering educational development in the country.
“It is a common axiom among us that education is the key to national development and economic empowerment. And we all cannot agree less that education in Nigeria needs urgent attention, in all spheres and at every level, whether formal or non-formal sector.
“For us at CSACEFA, we have continually asked ourselves what could be the cause of these and we have discovered that lack of partnership leading to unhealthy competition. Weak or even the lack of social accountability mechanism for knowledge sharing and even when such exited, CSOs and even government hold back information.
“All these make monitoring of policies, programmes and projects difficult if not impossible,” he said.
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