Why We Embraced Awo’s Education Template In Kaduna, By El-Rufai | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Why We Embraced Awo’s Education Template In Kaduna, By El-Rufai

Posted: Mar 4, 2016 at 5:31 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Laide Raheem, Abeokuta

Nasir El-Rufai, Governor of Kaduna State, on Thursday disclosed that his administration adopted the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s policy on education, for free, compulsory basic education with well-trained and motivated teachers to arrest the decline in the provision of quality education in Kaduna State.

Awolowo, former Premier of the Western Region, made free education one of the pillars of his Action Group, earning it accolades from far and near.

Governor El-Rufai made this declaration while giving his remarks as the chairman of the 2016 Obafemi Awolowo commemorative birthday symposium, held at the Efunyela Hall, Ikenne, Ogun State.

The Kaduna State governor, who spoke on the topic, “The Awolowo Legacy Lives On”, stressed that the late sage was a man whose politics were governed by progressive ideas, and a leader who combined what he called mental magnitude with an ability to implement his policies.

The governor said primary schools in Kaduna State were in a dismal condition when he took over the mantle of leadership in 2015, and Awolowo’s formula came handy to help the state fix the schools, many of which lacked furniture, doors, windows, roofs and water.

The governor noted that, between September 2015 and January 2016, his administration spent, more than N6 billion to put 4,254 public primary schools in good shape. and: “In the 2016 budget, the education sector has by far the highest allocation, accounting for more than a third of the budget.”

“We have, therefore, started the journey, but we have a long way and lots of hard work ahead of us to complete our programme of school repairs, provision of furniture and tools, students’ feeding and teachers’ training in an era of declining revenues.

“What no one can doubt is our commitment to expand access to education, and to deliver nine years of free, compulsory, basic education with well-trained and incentivized teachers,” he said.

El-Rufai noted that the late Premier of defunct Western Region deserved his reputation as a master executor of grand visions and lauded him for striving to build alliances and networks countrywide.

He said “The most famous of this is the 1983 understanding with prominent politicians of northern extraction who had tired of the NPN’s profligacy and incompetence. But it was by no means the first attempt to forge an alliance between the North and the West to firmly anchor national unity.

“Efforts made before and shortly after independence were stillborn; further proof that mutual desire is just a first step in consummating an alliance. I seize this opportunity to congratulate the three progressive leaders from the North (President Muhammadu Buhari) and West (Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Chief Bisi Akande) for finally cementing the political unification that achieved the feat of 2015, and that will achieve more for Nigeria, if carefully managed and nurtured by all sides.

“The outcome of the 2015 elections is both our present and our future, as it is our collective burden and opportunity. As the inheritors of the progressive legacies of Awo, we, the leaders and members of the APC, must strive as he did to meet the expectations of our people for a peaceful, secure and corruption-free nation that delivers social services to all and rewards ingenuity and hard work”.

He maintained that Awolowo was rightly regarded as a giant in his lifetime, and was eulogized at death as one tree that made a forest

Earlier, Ambassador Tokunbo Awolowo-Dosunmu, the director of the ?Obafemi Awolowo Foundation, commended the dignitaries for gracing the event noting that the event was brought to Ikenne with the aim of honouring late Mama H.I.D. Awolowo.

While paying tributes to “our departed leaders, fathers and mothers” El-Rufai thanked the daughter of thwe late sage, Awolowo-Dosunmu, Pastor Tunde Bakare and all the trustees of the Obafemi Awolowo Foundation for inviting him to chair the event.