Saraki speaks on CRK, IRK curriculum controversy

Senate President Bukola Saraki
Senate President Bukola Saraki

The president of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, has urged Nigerians to be calm over the new nine-year Basic Education Curriculum that had stirred controversy among religious bodies.

Mr. Saraki made the call Wednesday while receiving a delegation of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN.

He assured the delegation that the Senate Committee on Basic Education would investigate the complaints by the association on the curriculum to make it acceptable and satisfactory to all religions.

Mr. Saraki said the process began in 2010 when the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan came up with a series of reforms.

“This is with a view to reduce the number of subjects in school curriculum,” he said.

“As leaders, we must continue to seek and find solutions to problems.

“You will remember that in 2010, the past administration came up with reforms on how to reduce the number of subjects at the basic education level.

“There were about 20 subjects at that time, and subsequently they were reduced to 12.

“In the process of implementing those reforms, we have this problem. Why I am saying this is so we don’t leave here and believe that it was done to favour one religion over the other.

“Now the reform is clearly not working. So our responsibility is to look into that reform and make it work.

“I am sure that there was no intention to make one group feel disadvantaged with this new school curriculum.

‘’This is why this Senate will direct our Committee on Education to look at the reform and find out why it is not working with the relevant stakeholders,” he said.

Earlier, the leader of the delegation, Charles Adisa, called for the intervention of the National Assembly to ensure genuine respect for Nigeria’s Constitution.

Mr. Adisa, who represented, the CAN national president, Samson Ayokunle, said: “We also call for the abolition of obnoxious laws that infringe on freedom of worship.”

He said CAN wanted Islamic Religious Knowledge and Christian Religious Knowledge to be offered separately, while Social Studies and Civic Education should be merged.

Mr. Adisa also said the federal and state ministries of education should employ more teachers for religious subjects.

“This will allow students to opt for religious studies of their choice in all public schools in Nigeria,” he added.

Mr. Adisa noted that the Constitution was supreme over any other consideration.

He stressed that Chapter 1 of the Constitution states the fundamental human rights of Nigerians, including freedom of religion.

(NAN)


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  • okpada

    So GEJ self accaimed christian initiated it and now Christians who are his ardent supporters are now crying wolf. What an irony?

    • Abdulmojeed Nojeemdeen

      You can now see the hypocrites and nonetity. They all came blame malam adamu,the education minister,as though he initiated it. I said it,some people are mumus.

      • Kd

        But Jonathan initiated the confab but yet this administration said they wouldn’t implement it because it was not initiated by them and ACF said it shouldnt be implemented.. But you are quick to remind us that Jonathan initiated the educated what they implement…
        It’s about what is right not who is right

        • Abdulmojeed Nojeemdeen

          But remember, the party in power did not hide it’s objections to the fraudulent confab. Why should it now be its problem to implement what it was not interested in. This is academics policy of the government, just like the whistle blower, TSA,BVN,etc,so I don’t think the anxiety is necessary. Some elites under the cover of religion have sworn to make sure the government did not achieve anything.

  • systematic

    u see that is y we are saying that before you criticize sometine make so u understand it very well,religious vigours stated making there way. nonsense

  • Northeast

    There is a little bit of misunderstanding about the new curriculum, CAN should have consulted widely before over blowing the issue out of proportion.
    In the curriculum of basic education for JSS, the National value as a subject contains both CRS and IRS, and they are taught separately. But the subject name is National Value because it has aspects of civic education. In final exam of Basic Education Certificate conducted by NECO for JSS 3 students, the National Value as a subject has section CRS for Christian students, IRS for Muslim students and Civic Educational questions as a general section for the students.
    My question: is there any advantage given to a particular religion over the other?
    Allah knows the reason why some of us are Christians, some Muslims and others of other religions. As we leaders we must get our facts right before coming out to degrade any issue of national interest where all stakeholders were consulted before introduction. Thank you.

    • Ajayi Ifayemi

      I will say it here again, religion has fried the mind of our people. All need to hear is that someone is trying to disadvantage their religion and they will be up in arms without even checking the veracity of the statement. I am with you, I do not see the advantage/disadvantage for any religion in the curriculum, but many of the folks here have never seen not to talk of reading the curriculum.

  • OdeyPeter Odo

    Oh… And within the time the policy (reform) was initiated and approved, Wike wan honourable minister in the Education Ministry. No wonder he and Fayose and Fani-Kayode have not said anything about this islamization rants going on. How are the mighty fallen!

    • George

      You sown Dog slept with your mama to give birth to you, you are sick

      • OdeyPeter Odo

        If I do not reply you, you may feel that I did not see this your comment. Otherwise I know that silence is golden. However, let someone read this your comment and see if it makes sense or has anything with my comment above.

  • Gary

    Senator Saraki, your sly attempt at passing the buck to Jonathan does not pass muster. It will not be the first bone-headed decision the malleable Ijaw man made. He even attended OIC summit in a futile attempt to win the votes of people who saw his defeat as a religious duty.
    That a bad policy originated from Jonathan is not an excuse to foist an anti-Christian and pro-Islam curriculum on the country. Under the guise of streamlining courses.

    You want to reduce school subjects by merging CRK with Social Studies while leaving Arabic as a stand-alone subject in public schools. Pray tell when Arabic became a sought-after international language, other than being the language of the Koran? Arabic, not Chinese, the language of Nigeria’s new creditor-nation.

    Yet you and the Mallam in charge of Education continue to deny the obvious that any religion is being favored by this obnoxious policy proposal.
    In the same country where some Northern states have Ministries of Religious Affairs that only fund the building of Mosques and not Churches. They will not even grant permits for missions to build their own churches unless on the outskirts of town.

    You do these things to Christians and even the Shiites; then tell us that Nigeria must remain a united country because God put us together. The God we worship is not a God of injustice and oppression. He will deliver His people from oppression and persecution.

    Senator Saraki, you and your partymen should be careful with playing politics with our Faith. There’s a reason why God did not let Jonathan win. Now he and the Christians of Nigeria know better.