Ex-Lawmaker challenges Northern Governors on Jonathan’s Almajerai school model
Northern Governors have been challenged to understudy the efforts of President Goodluck Jonathan, minority South-South former Nigerian President to modernize the Almajeri system to conform with western education for proper implementation.
Honourable ABBA Anna’s Adamu former House of representatives member (Birniwa/Guri and Kiri Kasamma Federal constituency) said the north never appreciated what Jonathan did but rather abandoned the structures.
Speaking to the Guardian yesterday as the Nigerian children marked their day while being tucked away in their parent’s homes, the former lawmaker said Jonathan intended to uplift the North educationally but was frustrated even as more than 16 million children in Nigerian remain out of school.
He said the current events of the moment where each State is now sending Almajerai back to their home states have vindicated Jonathan.¹
“The schools built by Jonathan have been abandoned and it is becoming an issue between the Northern Governors who are now competing in sending the children back to their home States like rams.
“That is the conflict between some of the Governors, a child is everybody’s concern because you can not tell any of the children that are destined to be the President of Nigeria tomorrow among the children that are now being treated like lepers.
He expressed the hope of a change of attitude and heart by the Governors so that the system that was introduced by ex-President Jonathan be brought back and handled with more concern and care.
“The children that are being mistreated are the leaders of tomorrow.”
He said Children who are leaders of tomorrow cannot be up and doing without being properly educated.
He said if the education of the child is affected it means the future of the country is affected adding that one of the indices of development will be affected.
He said the COVID-19 has negative effect however he observed that if the society had been responsible it should have learnt a lot of lessons.
“It has also exposed our weaknesses which we are supposed to correct.
For instance, it is unfortunate that when the virus was confirmed on February 27th that it had reached the shores Nigeria the foreign countries all sent their aircraft to come and pick their nationals because they know Nigeria is never prepared to defend its citizens.
He said it was a clear indication of the rottenness of our nation. “What I will say here is the Children would be affected, if our current leaders are responsible enough, it was an opportunity to gear up their efforts to ensure that what they have lost from February to whatever date they are to resume is recovered.”
He said the sad aspect is that the children of the greater majority who are responsible for electing leaders are at the receiving end because children of the wealthy can get extra lessons.
He said the children of the common people would be left unattended to and they are more in number.
“It means the society would be more affected because a greater percentage of the future of the country would be affected.”
He faulted the school feeding program alleged to be ongoing during the forced holiday describing as a fraud.
“I agree with the idea that the children should be fed because when I was a local Government chairman in Guri, Jigawa in 1997/98 I introduced special primary school in my Local Government which was the best of its kind in Jigawa and what I discovered is that if the children in the rural areas are well fed in school the sky is their limit.
“They can even do better than those in urban centres. We made sure that we employed those that will cook for the kids wash their clothes and look after them generally.
“Believe me the first set of students who graduated they all went to the unity schools and today many of them are medical Doctors and Engineers.
“The point is unfortunately in as much as the idea is good but there is no monitoring about how the children are fed it can not work.
He said he also discovered that the desk officers in the State retain the vouchers, depriving the vendors the desk officers and their agents take charge.
“Some of the actual food vendors hardly make ends meet at the end of the transactions. So in our Nigerian context whatever program you introduce people will catch in on it.
“If there is no monitoring no matter how good the program, it would be a failure.”
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