The African Youths Assembly for Peace (AYAP), a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), has called on stakeholders to ensure adequate investment in the welfare of Nigerian teachers to guarantee quality teaching and learning environment for students.
Mr AbdulAziz Yusuf, the Head, Research and Publicity of the group, gave the advice on Tuesday in an interview with our correspondent to mark the 2021 World Teacher`s Day in Abuja.
The theme of the 2021 Teacher`s Day Celebration is “Teachers at the Heart of Education Recovery“, which Yusuf said recognises teachers for their tireless efforts even during times like COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns.
Yusuf expressed the need to remind all stakeholders on the importance of investing in the welfare and wellbeing of teachers, saying that no nation can develop without teachers.
According to him, good teachers are the bedrock of quality education.
“Teachers contribute enormously to human capital development, hence the need to invest in their welfare because without teachers, there would be no great scientists and lawyers.”
“In fact, it is said that “teachers are the makers of other professions,“ he said.
Yusuf, however, expressed dismay over the plight of some teachers in the country, especially, in states where salaries of teachers are owed for months.
“In as much as Nigeria celebrates teachers’ day, it is worrisome to witness the conditions of teachers in some states of the federation, especially at local government levels where salaries are not pay as at when due,“ he said.
He therefore appealed to the authorities to prioritise teachers’ salaries and make it a first-line charge to boost their morale for optimal performance.
According to him, “he who much is given much is expected“.
Our correspondent recalled that the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) in 1994 introduced the International Teachers’ Day to create awareness about the contributions and achievements of teachers.
It was also recalled that Oct. 5 was selected to honour teachers, as on this date 1966, a special inter-governmental conference was conducted where it accepted UNESCO’s recommendation on the Status of Teachers.