Nigeria News

El-Rufai’s Sincerity and Political Game of Public School Enrollment

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ElevateNews takes a look at the Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai enrolling his child, Abubakar in public primary school.

The Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai was loud last week for enrolling his son, Abubakar in a public school.

He did what has now become a taboo for many of the political office holders in the country.

The military killed the public schools and till date, no successive civilian regime has been able to revamp it, rather it is worse.

Public institutions have become so unattractive that not only the elites have stopped enrolling the children there, the educated but poor parents prefer to take a loan to get a better education for their children in quality private schools.

And for parents who lack the wherewithal, they settle for poor but affordable education, mostly in substandard private schools popularly called “Mushroom Schools”.

It is more or less poor Education for poor people.

With the N18,000 minimum wage over the years, civil servants engage in corruption to augment their pay so as to send their children to private schools.

For elected officers, the public treasury is looted and funds diverted to their private accounts.

With this, they built private schools, including tertiary institutions to the detriment of the public schools.

Three of our past leaders, President Olusegun Obasanjo established the Bell University, Atiku Abubakar established the American University, Ibrahim Babangida created Mariam Babangida University in Minna, Niger State.

There are numerous primary and tertiary institutions established by many of the politicians across the country while the public schools rot away.

Almost all the retired educationists in the public sector are now proprietors of private schools.

I could remember that the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo enrolled his children in public schools and it is also on record that the former Lagos State Governor, Alhaji Lateef Jakande did same.

The late Premier of Northern region Sir Ahmadu Bello also enrolled his wards in public schools.

Until El-Rufai did same a week ago, none of the governors has ever been reported to enrol his child in public primary school.

It suggests that they know the rot in such public schools but they prefer to divert the money to maintain their private enterprises instead of improving the public institutions.

Ironically, there are more qualified teachers in public schools than the private, yet they do not command respect as their private counterparts.

It was gathered that El-Rufai spent about N200 million in the school where he recently enrolled his son.

The school got a facelift not because the government considered it imperative but because it has since become the school of a governor’s son.

El-Rufai must have done this to win a political score as he went further to increase the salary of the teachers in the State public primary schools by 30 per cent.

This is a gesture that is long overdue, looking at the role of teachers in the lives of our children in Nigeria.

The salary increment to a larger extent will spur the teachers to give their best while the enrolment of EL-Rufai’s son has exemplified leadership that other politicians can follow.

This enrollment has not in any way suggest that the public primary school is working but it may help if other public servants can take a cue behind El-Rufai.

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