Former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Friday gave a hint on what would help the country out of its current insecurity challenges.
According to him, for the country to get out of all the challenges of insecurity including, banditry, Boko Haram, kidnapping among other crimes and criminalities, a long gestation period of training and educating all Nigerian children must be created.
Although he did not give how long or short the gestation period should be, Obasanjo emphasized that all Nigerian students irrespective of language, region, tribe or creed must get quality education.
He spoke while giving a remark at the commissioning of the Professor Abayomi Oluwatosin Jiboku Building and Entrepreneur Centre at Lariken International College, Ologuneru, Ibadan.
The former president who maintained that there must not be any substitute for quality education as a panacea also harped on the place of not allowing our culture and values to be eroded by other priorities.
Obasanjo said “Let me now talk about education. If we are going to get out of the morales of insecurity, banditry, Boko Haram, kidnapping and other criminalities, we will have a long gestation period of training and educating all Nigerian children.
“And I underlined, all Nigerian children. Education is the beginning of a life well-lived.
“God has given each and every one of us the innate ability. It is when those innate abilities are developed that you can be of best in your own self-service, in the service of our nuclear and extended family, in the service of our community and in the service of our nation and the world.
“Education, and there is no substitute for education. If you don’t give it, then those you should have given it to don’t have it and if they don’t have it, then you don’t get the best out of them and whatever you get out of them, if you start to complain, you will have yourself to blame. Education and quality education is important.”
He said further “The second thing that I will want to mention is culture. I define culture as the totality of the way of living of a particular people. Our food, our hair, make-up, fashion, dance, songs and even the way we carry our marriage and even our burials are all our culture from cradle to grave.
“What makes us different as a people is that totality of our ways of life. Yes, I do agree that culture is dynamic and of course if there is any part of our culture that must be removed, yes, we may have to remove it, but don’t let us forget our culture.
“Don’t let us have our culture to be overtaken by cultures that are not ours.
“Also, I want to tell us about values. One of the ways where we have problems in our society today is the worth or the value that we cherish.
“Today, money-making is something else. In Yoruba land, money-making is not one of our values but the Omoluabi ethos; truthfulness, integrity, truth, industry and hard work- where are all those now? Where have they gone? Why have we put them aside and all we are striving for is money?
In his opening remarks, Director, Lariken International College, Mr Idowu Jiboku said education today has changed a lot and it will continue to change depending on societal need saying “In today’s world, education has gone beyond memorization of facts and figures only.
“It now includes the teaching of life skills that can promote innovation reasoning and turn students into entrepreneurs and problem solvers.
“Sequel to the introduction of trade/entrepreneurship subjects by the federal government, we decided in 2017 to have an entrepreneurship centre that will teach these skills in the most immersive and practical way.”
He said, catering and confectionaries, cosmetology, robotics and artificial intelligence, fashion designing, leather works, graphics and web-designing, interior decoration, photography and cinematography are some of the courses that will be taught in the commissioned centre.
He added that the inauguration of the facility is part of the effort of Lariken International College to play a part by redefining what complete education is in Oyo State.
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Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Mr Olasunkanmi Olaleye in his remark commended the institution and charged them to put the facility to good use.