Nigeria: Ezekwesili Says Teachers' Housing Would Be Priority If Elected President

Oby Ezekwesili.
23 January 2019

Presidential candidate of Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Obiageli Ezekwesili, has assured teachers that her administration would give priority attention to accommodation if elected president in the February 16 presidential election.

"No teacher in full-time employment should be unable to live in comfortable accommodation, within a reasonable distance of his or her place of work. This initiative serves as a financial inducement towards teachers becoming house owners," Ezekwesili said in a statement by the spokesperson of her campaign organisation Ozioma Ubabukoh.

Ezekwesili, a former Nigeria education minister during former president Goodluck Jonathan administration, wondered why it is difficult for teachers to have a comfortable accommodation.

The former minister opined that the rate of poverty in Nigeria had also crippled the standard of education in the country.

"Housing for teachers tackles poverty, which currently plagues workers in this field and discourages most from aspiring to be teachers."

Ezekwesili, who lamented the current 5.4 million out-of-school children in Nigeria, said her administration would reduce the figure by 20 per cent annually.

"Using the Universal Basic Education Commission's incentivising funds to states once again as our handle, our ACPN administration will seek to attain gender parity in education concurrently with our goal of reducing the number of OOSC."

"This approach will embed the diversity of girl-child education initiatives within our obligation to Sustainable Development Goals4 on ensuring universal access to qualitative education to all citizens."

On her plans for children with disabilities in public schools, Ezekwesili said she would replicate an education agenda which catered for special children while serving as education minister.

"The knowledge that between 15-20 per cent of children who attend public schools have one type of learning disability or another, which the poor segment of our country are seldom able to handle alone, will compel our administration to reopen the Policy on Special Needs Education, which was first comprehensively formalised during the tenure of Obiageli Ezekwesili as minister of education," Ezekwesili said.

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