The Senator representing Kaduna Central, Shehu Sani, on Monday said Boko Haram insurgency has undermined the educational progress of Northern Nigeria.
He said five decades after Nigeria’s independence, the Northern region is lagging behind educationally and lamented that insurgency in the North-eastern part of the country has widened the gap.
Mr. Sani stated this in Kaduna when he visited the Kaduna National Library.
He said, “I am deeply concerned about the state of Libraries and the whole education in Nigeria, particularly Northern Nigeria. It is unfortunate that five decades after our independence, the northern part of the country is still lagging behind educationally in comparative with what is happening in the southern part of Nigeria. There is low level of enrollment in primary, secondary and post education levels.
“So, there is a general relative lack of interest in education in the north in comparative to the south. There is also low level of investment by state governments in the north and previous national government on areas of education in the north.
“There is also no doubt that insurgency in the north-eastern part of the country has seriously undermined the educational progress of Northern Nigeria. And the image of the north and northern people nationally and internationally is an image of people that are opposed or resistant to western education.
“The North is not a region that could be termed illiterate. We have a large number of people who can read and write, even if it is not English. But, what is needed here is to see how the states in the north could come together and tackle this issue of education emergency.
“The north and particularly Kaduna State cannot make progress without heavy investment in the area of education.” He said.
He also lamented that Nigerian political elites, having succeeded in destroying the educational system, now take refuge in sending their children to schools in Dubai, Malaysia and other western countries.
While identifying heavy investment in education as a way forward for Nigeria, the Senator pledged to come to the aide of the Kaduna National Library in the areas of books, furniture and conferences in order to promote reading culture.
Earlier, the Head of Kaduna National Library branch, Mohammed Umar, highlighted the many functions of the library and some of its challenges.
He was happy the Senator visited and said he hopes the visit will translate to improvement on the library facilities.