The National Commission for Mass literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education (NMEC) has said over 60 million Nigerians can’t read and write in any language. The Executive Secretary of NMEC, Prof Abba Abubakar Haladu, disclosed this at a Mass Literacy Roundtable discussion tagged “Literacy and Multilingualism: A Bedrock for Sustainable National Development” held in Abuja at the weekend. According to him, in addition to out-of-school children, Nigeria is challenged with high illiteracy rate amongst its adults and youth population. He said this has remained a major impediment to the country’s developmental aspirations, given the millions of adults and youths that are affected by these disabling conditions.
Prof. Haladu said for Nigeria to achieve self-sustained development, all its people, men and women, the youth and the aged irrespective of gender, age, location and conditions of life should be able to read, write and calculate. Also speaking, the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu who, was represented by his Minster of State, Emeka Nwajiuba, expressed confidence that at the end of the discussion, they will all come to appreciate the need for more support and intervention in strengthening the adult and youth literacy in the country. “It is imperative to act quickly to change the unsatisfactory education indicators which show a large number of out-of-school children, a high illiteracy level among youth and adults, infrastructural deficit and decay, inadequate access at the basic education and low quality of learning, among others,” he said.
He however said the ministerial roadmap developed by the ministry aims at repositioning Nigeria’s education sector. Meanwhile, the NMEC said it has distributed a total of 74 motorcycles to states (two each) across the federation and the FCT to help them improve on their role of improving mass literacy in the country. Also, full vocational skill kits were given to 10 states of Katsina, Kano, Kwara, Kogi, Edo, Abia, Ebonyi, Lagos and Ekiti to assist them in building the skill acquisition of their students in different areas such as beauty and therapy, among others. The states also received over 200 learning materials which include 56,000 copies of curriculum, 31,000 books, over 3,478 attendance registers, black boards, rulers, and sharpeners, among other items. (dailytrust)