The federal government has revealed that the number of out-of-school children in Nigeria has reduced from 10.1million in 2019-2020 down to 6,946,328 million following the introduction of Better Education Service Delivery For All (BESDA) in some affected states.
The minister of education, Malam Adamu Adamu, who disclosed this at the 2020 annual ministerial press briefing in Abuja yesterday, also said that a total of N1.7 trillion was spent on tertiary institutions in five and a half years of President Muhammadu Buhari's administration in capital projects, the highest in the history of the country.
Adamu stated that the BESDA programme through which federal government secured a World Bank credit facility in the sum of Six Hundred and Eleven Million Dollars ($611,000,000) to strengthen the universal basic education as well as address the first pillar of the Ministerial Strategic Plan (MSP) has contributed immensely in reducing the out- of-school children.
According to him, the programme which has been launched in ten states of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Ebonyi, Kano, Kebbi, Oyo, Yobe, Niger and Zamfara also helped to increase additional enrolment of 1,053,422 children.
"As at today, we have recorded impressive school enrolment figures in 17 states of the Federation where BESDA is being implemented.
I can however tell you that through the BESDA initiative, we have reduced the figure of Out-of School children from 10.1 million since May last year down to 6,946,328 million," he said.
He said the government is working on an instrument that will also make it an offence for any adult illiterate not to be undertaking any form of learning.
"The phenomenon of adult illiterates is equally disturbing. The children of illiterate parents are 80 percent more prone to be out of school than the children of the educated.
Estimated at about 60 million, adult illiterates constitute almost a third of the Nigerian population."