by Ekenwerigha D. Joshua

A call on education stakeholders to review the education curriculum in the country, organize regular community education summits, plant trees, build and stock libraries; and preserve the planet at all cost while building and sustaining global peace has been made by the Centre for Education Development and Skills Acquisition Initiatives (CEDESA) which recently held a One Day UNESCO Education Summit to celebrate the International Day for Education.

In her speech at the event, the CEO of CEDESA, Mrs Ugbe Oluronke noted that regardless of background, religion, location and gender that equal education to everyone is key to the development of the country. She stated that CEDESA as an NGO have decided to align with the SDGs goal number 4, which is ‘to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all’.

Mrs Ugbe also stressed that education must be given 100 percent attention; because: “Education is one of the most important investments a country can make in its people and its future”.

She lamented the poor state of infrastructure in our institutions and the attitudes of parents, students, teachers and the government towards education in the country and called for a reorientation in the society.

The CEDESA CEO also charged the participants to be part of those that will be reckoned with as education development ambassadors; “we are faced with two choices before us today; to either choose to become part of the global education advancement train by creating, supporting and promoting actions and activities for its propagation or choose to walk out this door today with the belief that there’s nothing you can do about it.”

Mrs Ugbe, therefore called on parents, teachers, community leaders, religious leaders, civil society organizations, government agencies to join forces to work to sustain the innumerable successes that comes with education and learning.

The International Day of Education 2020 celebration tagged “Learning for people, planet, prosperity and peace” featured panel discussion, public lectures and review and launching of the book “True & Quality Education: How to make it work” authored by Ugbe Ronke (CEO, CEDESA).

During the discussion, the panellists advocated for the review of the education curriculum currently in use in the country because according to them, the outputs or products of the curriculum no longer find a safe landing in almost any sector in Nigeria today. Also, they called on parents, schools, communities and the government at all levels to revive the dead reading culture in Nigeria by building and stocking near world-class libraries.

Furthermore, the need to use social media platforms as tools to push for public and social change was also stressed even as they urged students to have the will to better their lots irrespective of their parents educational and social status. Teachers were also encouraged to continue to impart on the lives of their students multidimensionally.

Meanwhile, in the featured lectures, Prof Irwin Akpoborie, MNES, Dr Ernest Chukwuka and Barr. Theresa Odo Esq.were of the opinion that enlightenment comes through education. According to Prof Akpoborie, “so many species are going into extinction right under our nose, yet we are not aware. How many birds do you see flying when you travel from Abraka to Agbor? Yet we seem not to be concerned.” He asked.

Education shapes the society and enable humans to play their role in protecting the planet; environmental education and the survival of the human race is everybody’s responsibility – “in your own little way you can start by planting trees instead of cutting and then the government have a very big role to play as well”, he opined.

Prof Akpoborie enumerated some of the adverse effects of climate change to include; excessive heat, flood, water shortage, crop failure, disease, increased risk of wars and conflict, wildfire amongst others.

In other lectures, students and graduates were charged to look beyond the acquisition of certificates in the university and focus on how to self-educate themselves and create jobs instead of depending on the government for employment that may never come. Also, the need for the youths to build and sustain global peace was said to be very important as nothing thrives in the absent of peace.