Return of Schools to Missionaries will lead to mass dropout —Ondo Muslims tell Akeredolu
…..Ondo govt reacts
Muslim community under the auspices of the Association of League of Imams and Alfas in Ondo State, has declared that returning public schools to Faith based Organisations will lead to more out of school children.
This is just as they threatened to drag the state governor, Rotimi Akeredolu to court if he refuses to rescind the decision to return schools to Faith-Based Organizations (FBOs).
Recall, that Akeredolu recently returned two Secondary and two primary schools to their original owners in the state.
The schools include St Thomas Aquinas College, St. Louis Girls Grammar School, Akure and two primary schools.
Addressing newsmen in Akure, the Chairman, the League of Imam and Alfas, Sheikh Ahmad Aladesawe described the state government’s step as barbaric, unprogressive and posing serious danger to the development of education in the state.
Aladesawe who was represented by the secretary of the league and Chief Imam of Supare Akoko, Alhaji Abdulrasheed Akerele, alleged that the steps were aimed at giving out public property to empower some individuals in the FBOs.
“It should interest those advocating for the return of schools to private organisations in Ondo state that our dear sunshine state accounts for over 44,000 of such out of school children. Handing over of schools to its “alleged owners” will do nothing but increase this number which will portend very serious security challenges to our peaceful state.”
The cleric alleged that such action would also deny Muslim children from going to such schools.
He, however, threatened that the Muslims Community would seek legal action if the state government failed to rescind the decision.
We want to say that the return of schools to FBO’S is archaic, barbaric, backward and nonprogressive. It is a call to return to the colonial era and above all, the call is contradictory to the electoral promises of the present administration.
“It is a call to hand over public properties to individuals ‘in the name of Faith-Based Organisations. It is a call to return to the dark era in the history of educational development in our nation, the call is fraudulent and is against progressive educational policy.
“It will result in more children being thrown out of schools, it is a call to deny the children of the impoverished masses access to affordable and qualitative education in an atmosphere of religious freedom devoid of bigotry.
“The idea of the “Original Owner” of the school is fraudulent as it is a call to hand over government property to cooperate bodies in the name of FBO’s.
“We want to say clearly that the idea of the “Original Owner” is nothing but cheap propaganda in other to arouse unwarranted sympathy from the innocent masses who are ignorant of the consequences of this heartless request.
” It will be bad precedence, an ungodly act and the fraud of the century that the property that we (Muslim, Christian and traditional believers) owned together under the government trust to be handed over to profit-oriented organisation under the guise of the been original owner or FBO’S after the acquisition, full compensation and heavy investment on the school by the government using the Taxpayers hard-earned resources.
“When schools are returned to the so-called “Original owners” or FBO’S, will the government handoff primary and post-primary education? if not, will they quickly build new schools to cater for the children of the masses who will definitely not be able to afford the consequences of that action? if the answer is no, then the implication is more children will be thrown out of the school by this move.
“This will be antithetical to the vision of providing qualitative education to the majority of the Ondo State children. Nigeria is currently battling with serious security issues and one of the factors traceable to this situation is ignorance and illiteracy orchestrated by over 40Million school children,” the Muslims said.
ONDO GOVT REACTS TO MUSLIMS DEMANDS
Following the complaint of the Muslim community in Ondo state over the decision of the state government to hand over some schools to faith based organisation, the state government has promised to adequately address their concerns
The Commissioner for information and Orientation, Donald Ojogo stated this in an interview in Akure.
Ojogo commended the Muslim community for not taking laws into their hands saying government was more willing to listen to various complaints on the matter
He however appealed for calm from religious organizations in the state saying the move was not to raise any form of tension among both faiths
It would be recalled that the state government recently approved the release of two schools , St Thomas Aquinas college Akure and St Louis grammar school to missionaries.