‘Take basic education from local governments’ – Kwara Speaker

Tunde Akanbi,Ilorin

The Speaker of the Kwara State House of Assembly, Doctor Ali Ahmad, has canvassed for the takeover of Basic Education by State Governments from local government councils as a solution to the non-payment of salaries of most Basic school teachers across the country.

Doctor Ahmad who said he would push for the takeover of Basic Education by States in the constitutional amendment retreat in Lagos explained that most Local Government Councils across Nigeria owed their primary and junior secondary schools teachers several months of salaries arrears due to too many responsibilities contending with the meagre resources of Councils in the Country.

The Speaker stated this in Ilorin while declaring open a Consultative Forum hosted at the State House of Assembly to appraise developmental projects in Federal and Kwara State budgets within the last one year.

Doctor Ahmad who described basic education as the foundation of sustainable educational system of any country, insisted that unless the nation’s 1999 Constitution is amended to allow State Governments take over the running of Basic education in the Country, Basic Education according to him under the present arrangement would crumble.

He said investigation conducted by the eighth legislature under his watch on Basic Schools across the State as well as the State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) gave insight into the enormous challenges bedevilling the running of Primary and Junior Secondary Schools by Local Government Councils in the country.

The State Commissioner for Information and Communication, Alhaji  Mahmud Babatunde Ajeigbe explained that government was committed to ensuring access to qualitative education and disclosed that the state government would soon convene Education Summit where all issues impeding the realisation of its objectives would be brought to fore for prompt solution.

In their submissions, the State Chairman of the Nigerian Union of Teachers, Comrade Musa Abubakar and the Nigerian Union of Local Government narrated the current ordeal of their members and appealed to the State House of Assembly, State and Federal Governments to find enduring solutions to the problem to salvage Basic education in the country from imminent collapse.