Bayelsa State Governor, Hon Seriake Dickson has called on all tiers of Government in the country to declare a state of emergency on education, with a view to achieving sustainable national development.
Bayelsa State Governor, Hon Seriake Dickson has called on all tiers of Government in the country to declare a state of emergency on education, with a view to achieving sustainable national development. The Governor, who made the call when participants of the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) Course 37, Kuru, Jos in Plateau State, visited him in Yenagoa, identified lack of political will on the part of successive governments to invest appropriately in the sector, as the bane for true educational advancement in the country.
Governor Dickson, who did not single out any particular administration to blame for the unwholesome development, decried the level of infrastructural setback plaguing most educational institutions, including schools that have produced leaders of the nation at various times. Making reference to Oloibiri in Ogbia Local Government Area of the State, where crude oil was first struck in commercial quantities, the Governor, who described human capacity development as the most important resource, argued that, true sustainable prosperity will remain a mirage in Nigeria, if Governments continue to place high premium on harnessing natural resources at the expense of education.
He noted that, though, Nigeria is faced with a myriad of problems, including inadequate power supply, the nation will make appreciable progress the moment the much desired attention is paid to human capacity development. The Governor said, it was in realisation of this fact, that his administration has continued to accord priority attention to the education sector, since its inception, and vowed not to relent in its efforts in moving the sector forward in the State.
Intimating the study team of some of his administration's achievements in the sector, he also emphasised the need for training and retraining teachers, lamenting that, but for the sharp drop in revenues accruing to the State, the Government would have inaugurated its already completed Teachers Training Academy and several other educational infrastructure, such as boarding schools, that would be put to use from September, this year. His words: "Quite frankly, there is no more pressing national problem that, we all need to solve the challenge of repositioning the education system, because whether you talk about the challenge of terrorism, militancy and any other situation that have made our country a laughing stock and dislocations within us, you can't be far from tracing the major cause to the abandonment of education. "We are of the view that governments over the years appear not to have paid sufficient attention to investing in education, which alone has the capacity to guarantee our future as a people.
It is very sad in this country that even educational institutions that have produced presidents and other national leaders have been allowed to deteriorate. I am not holding any particular government or regime responsible but this is what I have found as our collective malaise." Earlier, the Leader of NIPSS, Course 37 Team, Kuru, Jos, Major General Johny Hamakim said, they were in Bayelsa to identify peculiar problems facing the education sector in the State in line with a presidential mandate to the institute for the current year.
Major Gen. Hamakim, who announced the study theme as" Repositioning the Nigerian educational system for global competitiveness, noted that recommendations would be made to President Goodluck Jonathan at the end of the research tour, even as he invited the Governor to attend the discussion session on their findings about the State on the 18th of May, 2015 at the Institute.