“Riff-raffs” are not needed in the education sector, Babangida warns Wike


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Following the comments of the minister of State for education, Nyesom Wike over the status of education sector of Niger State, the governor, Dr Babangida Aliyu has warned that Wike should be cautious of his statements so as not to engender spite from the state.

Aliyu gave the warning while speaking at the ceremony organized for the signing of the state University of Education bill into law at Government House Minna, yesterday.

The servant governor, as he is popularly called, said that Wike who is now the acting minister of education, should stop meddling with the affairs of other states when he simply pointed out that ‘’education administration is not for riff raffs.’’

Aliyu accused Wike of making irrelevant and unwarranted comments about the state of affairs in the education sector in Niger State

’‘I do not know when he got into education. Education is not for riff raffs and he should, therefore steer clear of Niger State.

’’If he (Wike) can fight the governor of his state (Rivers) he cannot fight other governors and so, he should take his time,’’ Governor Aliyu warned.

Aliyu also maintained that  Wike is naïve with issues of the education sector, hence he said Wike is not expected to cause more problems through his statement.

In a statement issued in response to this, Wike’s Special Adviser (Media), Simeon Nwakaudu, said the minister would not be distracted by criticisms but would rather focus on the delivery of access to quality education.

Nwakaudu’s statement read in parts: “As a seasoned administrator, lawyer and former secondary school teacher, Wike is passionate about education, hence he has consistently built synergy to develop the sector, working closely with governors at all times.

“He (Wike) believes that all Nigerian children deserve access to education, hence he advocated that state governments should invest more in education.

“Nigerians are conversant with the Almajiri girl child and library projects supervised by the minister to uplift access to education in the country. He will continue to focus on the onerous task of improving education in the country.”

Aliyu, however, premised the necessity of the establishment of the university, on the reasons that the north could not boast of 50 per cent qualified teachers to staff its primary schools.

Aliyu who signed into law two other bills; the Vision 3:2020 law and the Pilgrims Welfare Commission bill, also explained that the University of Education, to be situated at the current permanent site of the state College of Education, Minna.

He said it would also provide avenue for training of teachers in secondary schools in the state and the entire northern Nigeria where there was currently none of such institution.

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