The National Commission for Mass literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education says over 60 million Nigerians are unable to read and write in any language.
The executive secretary of the commission, Prof. Abba Abubakar Haladu, said this in Abuja weekend at the literacy roundtable discussion tagged "Literacy and Multilingualism: A Bedrock for Sustainable National Development."
Haladu said in addition to the challenge of out-of-school children, Nigeria was also faced with high illiteracy rate amongst its adults and youth population.
He said this had remained a major impediment to the country's developmental aspirations, given the millions of adults and youths affected.
He said for Nigeria to achieve self -sustained development, all its people, men and women, the youth and the aged irrespective of gender, age, location and conditions of life should be able to read, write and calculate.
The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, represented by the Minster of State, Emeka Nwajiuba, said: "It is imperative to act quickly to change the unsatisfactory education indicators which show a large number of out-of-school children, a high illiteracy level among youth and adults, infrastructural deficit and decay, inadequate access at the basic education and low quality of learning among others."