By Magnus Emuji
The need for governments and other critical stakeholders in the education sector to take a holistic approach towards ensuring that quality, safe and inclusive education was accessed by every individual in the society has been brought to the fore.
The Policy Advisor/National Coordinator of Civil Society Action Coalition Education for All (CSACEFA), Mrs Odinakachi Ahanonu made the call in Asaba during the opening ceremony of a two-day capacity-building workshop on budget monitoring and tracking for members of CSACEFA from South West, South East and South-South.
She said that CSACEFA was a coalition of members of civil society organisations that worked on education issues in Nigeria to ensure that every Nigerian child irrespective of gender and ethnicity had access to free, safe and inclusive education.
Mrs. Ahanonu , who frowned at the low budgetary provision for education by successive governments in Nigeria, stated that education budget should be increased to 20% and implemented for the overall growth and development of the education system.
The CSACEFA Policy Advisor explained that several State Governments had not been accessing UBEC funds, adding that the few that accessed the funds do not utilise the money to achieve the purpose for which it was meant, but channeled such funds into other sectors instead of using it to enhance the standard of education.
While saying that the workshop would equip members of the group with the expected Knowledge to enhance budget monitoring, Mrs. Ahanonu encouraged participants at the workshop to ensure that they trained other members that could not participate in the training.
Mrs. Ahanonu said that at the basic level of education there was adequate infrastructure to guarantee conducive to for children, stressing that training and retraining of teachers and their remuneration should be given priority attention.
Also speaking, the Delta State Coordinator of CSACEFA, Augusta Impact Keneboh said that their members were being trained to be able to effectively hold governments accountable in the Implementation of the education budget.
Keneboh, who said that Delta State was chosen as the State for the training of members of the organisation, said that the workshop was designed to analyse the education budget to ascertain whether it was adequate or not and urged governments to adhere to 15% to 20% international agreement for the educational budget provision.