The duo of the former Minister of Information and National Orientation and the Chancellor of Covenant University, Ota, Ogun State and General Overseer of the Living Faith Church Worldwide, Prof. Jerry Gana and Dr. David Oyedepo, respectively, have advised President Muhammadu Buhari to consider fixing the education sector if truly he is committed to rewriting the nation’s history for good.
They said no nation can ever develop beyond the quality of her education, citing the examples of many nations including Singapore, Israel, South Korea, as countries that have achieved significant socio-economic development through massive investments in education.
The duo spoke at the weekend during the 11th convocation ceremony of the Covenant University, where Gana delivered a keynote address on the topic: ‘Improving Graduate Employability and Global Competitiveness: A review of Nigerian Higher Education Delivery’.
According to the former Minister and Chairman of Governing Council of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Akoka, the multifaceted challenges confronting the education sector such as poor access, poor quality control mechanisms, and poor linkages between academic programmes and the national economic needs, if adequately addressed will translate to national rebirth.
In a similar development, Oyedepo, who titled his speech: ‘Towards the Rescue of a Nation on the Brink of Intellectual Bankruptcy’, also linked development to education.
He said: “The massive investment in education is the foundation of great countries especially Singapore which was also a very poor country about 140 years ago.
“Is it not noteworthy that the great scientist, Albert Einstein, was from Israel? And within the last five years alone, Israel has produced about 180 Nobel Prize winners. This implies that for us to overcome our challenges as a nation, politics cannot do it but education,” Oyedepo said.
Meanwhile, the son of the Saturday Editor of Punch Newspapers, Mrs Olabisi Deji-Folutile, Winner, has emerged the overall best student of the university.
The 21-year-old, who scored a total of 4.97 Cumulative Gradient Point Average (CGPA) to beat a total of 156 other graduates with First Class degree certificates, thanked God for the feat, and commended his parents for providing him what he described as quality upbringing and support.
Winner, who also doubled as the head of the university’s students’ union, otherwise known as Students’ Council, described his feat as the Lord’s doing, thanking Oyedepo for his passion to rewrite Nigeria’s history through his investments in education.
A total of 1,549 students including 154 postgraduate candidates and 1,495 undergraduates bagged certificates in various categories.