By Sani Gazas Chinade, Damaturu
As Nigerian Teachers join their counterparts across the world to commemorate this year’s World Teachers’ Day, the Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) Dr. Tony Ojukwu OFR, SAN, has called on government at all levels to put adequate measures in place to create a more conducive environment for teachers to thrive, as the enjoyment of the right to education is hinged on their performance.
Dr. Ojukwu who made this call in Abuja on the eve of the commemoration said that the lack of trained and qualified teachers in public primary and secondary schools across the nation is becoming worrisome.
He attributed this challenge to teachers leaving their profession to others, in search of better emoluments, thereby paving way for quacks to operate. “This day serves as a reminder of the importance of qualified teachers in achieving inclusive and equitable education that is sustainable” he emphasised.
The ES stated further that World Teachers’ Day is held annually on the 5th of October to celebrate teachers around the globe for their contributions to moulding of the society. According to him, it commemorates the anniversary of the adoption of the 1966 International Labour Organization (ILO) / United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)’s Recommendations concerning the status of teachers.
The Learned Silk observed that as “we celebrate this year’s World Teachers’ Day, we ponder on transforming education as well as reflect on the support teachers need to develop their potentials while advancing the teaching profession”.
He reiterated the need for achieving Goal 4 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals, which recognized the importance of qualified teachers in achieving inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all.
The Human Rights Chief further stated that NHRC recognizes that the realization of the right to education is based on quality teachers with the capacity to deliver quality education, this also requires commitment from government, education sector, and other relevant stake holders.
He used the opportunity of the Commemoration to commend the Taraba State Governor, Mr. Agbu Kefas for making the right to education a reality in the State, as he recently declared free education in Primary and Secondary Schools after slashing to 50% of the tuition fee of Taraba State University and that of the College of Nursing and Midwifery all in Jalingo, the State capital.
Similarly, Dr. Ojukwu also commended Prof Babagana Umara Zulum of Borno State for the payment of WAEC, NECO and NABTEB fees for students in the State, saying this will encourage more students to enrol for the exam thereby advancing the literacy level in the State.
According to the NHRC Boss, this year’s theme “The teachers we need for the education we want: The global imperative to reverse the teacher shortage” underscores the need for putting incentives in place to attract more teachers to the profession.