Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN), Oyo State chapter, has condemned the call for the reintroduction of education levies in public schools in the state by the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT).
DAILY POST gathered that the immediate past Chairman of NUT in the state, Mr. Niyi Akano had called for the reintroduction of education levies in both public primary and secondary schools in the state.
But, SPN rejected the call by the former NUT Chairman.
SPN in a statement signed by its State Secretary, Comrade Ayodeji Adigun described the call as anti-people and insensitive.
Adigun in the statement made available to DAILY POST on Friday said, “The attention of the Socialist Party of Nigeria, Oyo State Chapter, has been drawn to the call for the reintroduction of the payment of education levies across primary and secondary schools in the State. The call was credited to the immediate past chairman of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) in Oyo State, Niyi Akano.
“SPN rejects this kind of call. It is anti-people and insensitive to the mass agony and misery under which millions of working people in the State groan at this present time. Again, it is quite unfortunate that such a call emanated from someone who ordinarily should have been at the forefront of advocacy for free and quality education in the State, being the immediate past chairman of NUT in the State.
“Other statements like “parents in the state should be ready to make sacrifices over their wards” which was credited to Mr Niyi Akano is a wrong indictment on a mass of the poor parents in the State. As far as we of the SPN are concerned, it is not out of place if parents rely on the Government to always pick the education obligation of their wards. After all, proper and adequate funding of free, quality education for all citizens regardless of religious affiliation and social status is a social responsibility of every purposeful government.
“Unfortunately, despite the huge noise the Engr Seyi Makinde-led government had made around the so-called cancellation of the education levy, which the regime often misnamed as “free education”. The practical realities across primary and secondary schools in the State are far from what can be described as free, quality education. Parents have continued to bear a huge cost of education for their wards. This is because the so-called cancellation of the education levy is without additional funds committed to ensuring proper and adequate funding of public education in the State.
“This kind of unfortunate situation has no doubt subjected education workers particularly teachers and heads of schools like principals and Headteachers in the case of primary schools to face an impossible task. Some responsibilities like provision of some materials like chalks, diaries, registers, biro and lesson notes for the teaching, assessment and evaluation of students and pupils are usually procured from the limited fund often generated through the education levy which was cancelled by Engr Seyi Makinde-led government. Now, in most schools, it has become the responsibilities of Teachers and Head of schools. The implication of this, therefore, is that students are usually left idle due to lack of materials for teaching, assessing and evaluating especially whenever the heads of schools are overwhelmed by this responsibility and it becomes so obvious that they can no longer continue to undertake this task with their hard-earned meagre salary.
“In fact, there are instances where teachers and administrators of schools were made to suffer different forms of punitive measures under the Engr Seyi Makinde-led government for the “offence” that they solicit for both financial and material support from parents whenever they are faced with the unfortunate situation where they lack teaching materials to be used for students.