Nigeria risks failing to meet Education For All by 2015, says Education Minister


Education-Minister3The Minister of Education, Prof Ruqayyatu  Rufa’i, on Tuesday said Nigeria had been listed as one of the countries at risk of being unable to meet the Education For All (EFA) goal by 2015.
She said this in Abuja at the opening ceremony of the E-9 workshop with the theme: “Enhancing Public Private Partnership for Literacy in Nigeria”
The minister said the workshop organised in collaboration with UNESCO was to create a new alliance with traditional and new partners toward the acceleration of literacy delivery in Nigeria.
According to her, no meaningful development can take place without a literate citizenry and collective responsibility, stating that the country was unable to meet the full cost of education.
“Nigeria has been listed as one of the countries at risk of being unable to meet the EFA goal especially, goal 4 of halving illiteracy by 2015 unless urgent and augmented action is taken.
“However, like most governments across nations, we are unable to meet the full cost of education even as we have the aspiration to do so
“Therefore, the fight against illiteracy needs a holistic approach as well as share a collective responsibility to assist the high number of illiterates in our various villages and communities, to create a better living for them.”

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Rufa’i stated that the workshop was organised in furtherance of a sustainable and enduring public-private partnership for literacy toward achieving the EFA goal 4 with a special focus on girls and women
She, however, said the literacy survey 2010 by the National Bureau of Statistics estimated that 40 million adult Nigerians were illiterate, with only 500 presently enrolled in adult literacy classes.
According to her, Nigeria is the current chair of the E-9 forum which is a group of nine most populous countries of the world with the highest rates of illiteracy which will handover to India in 2012.
Speaking earlier, the Minister of State for Education, Mr Ezenwo Wike, said in spite of the various efforts aimed at attaining a high literacy level in Nigeria, illiteracy still remained a major  problem.
He said the EFA goal cannot be achieved without the collaborative effort of the private sector.
According to him, illiteracy has affected a lot of developmental issues, noting that the National Strategic Framework on Adult and Youth literacy programme should be implemented without further delay.
He said the ministry would ensure that Nigeria left the league of E-9 countries and commended the offices of the senior special advisers on MDGs, UNESCO, NMEC and NATCOM-UNESCO for their selfless efforts.

“I want to assure all of us that Mr. President is seriously concerned on the present illiteracy rate in the country and has since directed the Federal Ministry of Education to ensure Nigeria quit the league of E-9 countries”.
Meanwhile, the Country Representative of UNESCO, Dr Joesph Ngo, said the organisation would continue to support efforts at reviving adult and youth literacy in Nigeria. (NAN)

Babatunde Akinsola
Babatunde Akinsola
Babatunde Akinsola is aNaija247news' Southwest editor. He's based in Lagos and writes on the Yoruba Nation political issues, news and investigative reports

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