An Islamic cleric, Professor Sabit Ariyo Olagoke has said the provision of free education up to the secondary level for citizens is one of the areas any responsible government must prioritize.
Olagoke, who is a former Dean, School of Engineering, Federal Polytechnic Ilaro, Ogun State made this disclosure while speaking in Ibadan on Wednesday.
The cleric who is the Founder/ Spiritual Head of Shafaudeen in Islam Worldwide, while addressing guests at the 4th annual Ramadan lecture organized by Sports Writers’ Association of Nigeria (SWAN), Oyo State, maintained that provision of free education up to secondary level for citizens in a country is not a luxury but a right that should be enjoyed by the citizens.
At the event were a former Chief Press Secretary to former Governor Lamidi Adesina, Kehinde Olaosebikan, National President, Muslim Media Practitioners of Nigeria (MMPN) Abdul-Rahman Balogun, Oyo NUJ Chairman, Ademola Babalola and Chief Adeola Badru.
Olagoke while speaking on the topic, “Fasting during a pandemic: The Takeaways”, said that UNESCO did not make mistake when it recommended the provision of free education up to secondary level for children.
He declared that the money government uses to do other things is more than the money they can use to provide free education for the citizens.
Olagoke urged President Muhamadu Buhari, state governors and other rich individuals to strive to provide free education for citizens up to the secondary level.
He said, “A responsible government must provide education for citizens up to secondary level.
“Just as UNESCO recommended, education up to secondary level is a right of all children. It is not a luxury but a right that should be enjoyed.
“Obafemi Awolowo did not make mistake when he introduced free education in the old Western region in 1955.
“The government must please think of the masses. They must remember that all of us are the masses. Awolowo said that free education is possible. Free education is possible. The money people are using to do other things is more than what they can use to provide free education.
“You can only immortalize yourself when you empower others. These are some of the teachings of Ramadan.”
While speaking on the efforts by security agencies to halt the current security challenges facing the country, Olagoke maintained that police and other security agencies in the country are capable to secure the country but they cannot perform better due to the fact that the system has been polarized by politics.
“Our policemen are good. They are professionals. If they want to work, they will work. But, they have been polarized by politics.”