…assures overhaul of education sector, proposes education bond
The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has charged the private sector, members of the political class and other public-spirited Edo citizens to adopt a school as a way of complementing the state government’s efforts to reposition education.
Obaseki, while addressing government officials who went on schools’ monitoring across the state, said his government will continue to partner with all stakeholders to ensure all-round development in the state.
The governor said his government is considering an education bond to raise the needed funds to urgently revamp the state’s education sector.
He said, “Just listening to all the submissions of heads of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), Commissioners and Special Advisers who monitored schools across the state at resumption, there is an urgent need to, as a government, rollout a marshal plan and agree to look for substantial amount of money either from our budget or from our citizens to invest massively in education over the next five years. If we don't, we would have a crisis.
“We need to build more schools. We are saying people should go to school, yet we are not finding them classes. We have people who are ready to train these children, we just have to upgrade their skills and motivate them. We should look for ways to make the investment and make education and schooling more attractive.”
Reassuring his government’s commitment to sustain the investment in the education sector, Obaseki added, “We will reinvest massively in education as we are ready to raise an education bond. We are ready to go around the world pleading with Edo people to help us raise an education bond and reinvest massively in education. Even if it's N50 billion or N100 billion that need to be raised to be put into our schools and train our next generation, we will do it. We can't continue like this.
“In another 20 to 30 years, we would be old and if we fail to invest in education massively and train our children, they can’t be there for us.”
Speaking on the need to adopt a school policy, the governor said, “I urge urge participants and members of the private sector to adopt a school, monitor the same and report back to enable the state government to do the needful because the government can't do it alone.”
He further noted, “Basic education is free and compulsory and as a government, we want to focus on our schools to improve access to education, ensuring quality education in all our schools across the state. This action or move is to ensure all our children and even those that are not our children but reside in the state all go to school.
“We are ready and prepared to go to Mission Road in Benin City to clear out all the children which are now used for street begging. These children have no reason to remain in the street to beg; they either go back to school or go back to where they come from.”