The Emir of Kano and former CBN governor, Muhammadu Sanusi, has called for a review of the curriculum in Nigerian universities saying that it has continued to impact negatively on the numbers of unemployed graduates chunked out every year, despite opportunities that exist in the nation’s economy.
He opined that the Queens English should not be used as a criteria to determine the level of student’s intelligence, rather local languages should be taught in schools, just like China, France, among other countries that have remained leaders in the global economy.
Sanusi who was special guest at the King’s College Founder’s Day lecture in Lagos, organised by its Old Boy’s Association (KCOBA), said unemployment rate has continued to increase in the country because Nigeria lacks graduates who are industrially trained for what the economy really needs.
“There was a time in China when every institution taught engineering because China needed engineers to boost their economy in the long run. It is only in Nigeria you find an electronic engineer who doesn’t know how to fix his air conditioner.
“Today, graduates of agriculture are not setting up agricultural enterprises. It is at this level that jobs are created. I will like to see re-evaluation of our university curriculum, ” he said.
The traditional ruler, who drew attention to the dangers of placing linguistic barriers for Nigerian students, noted that for this sole reason, children are growing up, not knowing how to speak their mother tongue.
He said if this trend is not addressed, Nigerian languages may soon go into extinction.
“We still believe that the only way to educate children is to build classrooms. In some developed countries, children in some rural communities are taught in their homes and under the trees using electronic tablets. We spend so much money in Nigeria building class rooms whereas there are no trained teachers to teach the students. It is better to invest in technology and train the students at home. This way, they learn at the same time, remain abreast with their languages, cultures, values and norms.”
Speaking further on language barrier, he wondered why a poor farmer will be required to speak queens English to earn a living and what relevance language could be to an electrician or a mechanic who in reality only need basic education, skill acquisition and electricity to function effectively in his job. Age