In Nigeria today, the only government’s benefit that youths from affluent and vulnerable backgrounds strive to get in order to actualise their ambitions at the same time is education. Globally, it is considered as the engine room that controls the present, as well as the future, but recently some leaders have decided to make it hard and unaffordable to the poor citizens. The economic hardships following the removal of fuel subsidy has led many families to sleep without consuming anything, majority of them struggle hard on a daily basis to get what to eat, aside from paying huge amounts as tuition fees for their children in higher institutions.
Increase in tuition fee is one of the reasons why many prefer to dump their educational pursuit for other alternatives despite the fact that they are doing great in their different courses. To start business of any kind one needs capital and other relevant inputs, but unfortunately, a high number of people that give up on education do not have access to capital. Youths born with silver spoons are sent abroad to study while the masses rust in institutions where lecturers don’t spend a year without embarking on strikes. Nigeria’s current condition goes in line with the statement of Persey Bysshe Shelley who said: “The rich are getting richer while the poor are getting poorer.”
To end the burden and make things right, the students’ loan is a good move by the federal government, but the conditions attached to it should be revisited, as getting government work will turn to searching for cold water in the desert. Tuition fees of tertiary institutions need to be reduced so that education could be accessible and fees affordable to everyone irrespective of differences.
Thirdly, opportunities to enroll for educational scholarships should be opened to all; not only to those from rich families or through the use of nepotism.
Lastly, the government should do everything possible within its capacity to implement agreements reached with lecturers of institutions ranging from colleges of education, mono-technics and polytechnics to universities. Doing this will definitely hinder them from all forms of industrial action.
Mukhtar wrote from Bauchi State and can be reached via [email protected].