Gov. Abubakar Bagudu of Kebbi has called on stakeholders in the education sector to come up with new solutions to address illiteracy in the country.
Bagudu made the call when he received the stakeholders, led by the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu in his office on Thursday.
The stakeholders were in Kebbi to commemorate the 2017 International Literacy Day.
The day is celebrated every September 8. In Nigeria, the National Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-Formation Education to celebrate the day.
Bagudu said that the era of just talking should stop, while positive action should be taken to end illiteracy in the country. “I plead that we must think out of the box if we are to progress in this area.
“At the end of this conference let us have things that can work in addressing illiteracy rather than repetition of documents that cannot work.
“Politicians are motivated by simple things that can work; so our focus must be on what can work,’’ the governor said.
Bagudu noted that the inability to read and write could be exploited by evil agents to cause havoc in the society.
He lamented the rate of illiteracy, saying that many people could not express themselves even in the religion they profess.
“The biggest challenge we have had and are still having is the inability to read, write and digest it.
“The exploitation of our frontlines is that we have the inability of people to read and write and this can be exploited by agents to wreck havoc; see the issue we have with Boko Haram today.
“So, this is the time to address the issue of illiteracy in Nigeria,’’ he said.
Bagudu said that the spread of mass literacy centres and offices across the country represented the reality that the issue of illiteracy must be addressed and resolved.
Earlier, the minister commended the Kebbi Government for its efforts on education and called on the governor to do more in reducing illiteracy in the state. Adamu, represented by Mr Jonathan Mbaka, Director, Basic and Secondary Education in the ministry, said education was the bedrock of development in any society.
He noted that because of the high illiteracy rate in Nigeria, the ministry’s Strategic Plan had out of school children as priority.
“We have ways of reducing out of school children through inclusive education for all,’’ he added.
The minister commended the wife of the governor, Hajiya Aisha Bagudu, for her efforts towards educating the Almajiris and less privileged in the state through her foundation.
“Indeed, the vocational training is useful so that they can be self-employed and be employers of labour,” he said.