Connect with us

Opinion

Voice of Emancipation: Transformation Through Yoruba Nation (Pt. 3)

Published

on

By Kayode Emola

Of the many challenges facing Nigeria today, one causing more severe effects is the high rate of illiteracy. Previously, it was widely believed that the people of southern Nigeria were much better educated than those in the north. However, since Yorubaland relinquished management of their educational system in favour of centralisation, lack of investment in schooling infrastructure in southern Nigeria has now badly affected our literacy rate.

The last time there was significant development of educational infrastructure in Yorubaland was during the tenure of Lateef Jakande as Governor of Lagos State. Jakande ensured many primary and secondary schools were built in Lagos, and then went on to build Lagos State University. The schools were distributed across many rural areas, ensuring that basic education was accessible to the wide majority of the population. Shamefully, the provision of infrastructure has not kept pace with population growth, resulting in the educational need outstripping the ability of these facilities to fulfil it. Consequently, the number of private primary and secondary schools has now surpassed that of public schools in Lagos.

The bottom line is, private school tuition is too exorbitant for an average family to afford, whilst public schools do not have the capacity to educate the number of children requiring it. Therefore, it becomes impossible to access basic education, and so many children are having to grow up without.

This situation is not confined to Lagos, but observable across several states in Nigeria, meaning that the basic necessity of education is being denied to millions of children across Nigeria. According to report published by Statista in April 2022, there is deficit of over 230 thousand classrooms countrywide. The truth is, given the high illiteracy rate, the true extent of classrooms needed may far exceed the quoted data.

Education is the bedrock of any society, so if Yoruba nation seeks to reverse the downward trend in its economy, a substantial amount of our budget must be allocated to education. It is no coincidence that many of the advanced countries, like Finland, Norway, Australia, have literacy rates of 100%, whilst many of the underdeveloped countries, such as Burkina Faso, Niger Republic etc, have literacy rates under 40%.

Rebuilding the Yoruba education system is not as simple as merely increasing the number of classrooms to match the purported need. We need to overhaul the entire system, creating a new, pragmatic system that is assuredly fit for purpose. We must ensure that people are getting value for the time they invest in learning, and that they are completing their educational journeys equipped with the necessary skills to advance their career.

It is worth, therefore, analysing the education system currently practiced in Nigeria, in order to compare with the system proposed for implementation in Yorubaland. The current system takes the form of 6 – 3 – 3 – 4: six years in primary school, three years in junior secondary and three in senior secondary. The remaining four years are ostensibly for completion of a university degree, however this fails to account for extended courses, such as engineering or medicine.

If the system worked as it ought, each child should start class 1 when they are between the age of five and six years old. They spend 16 years in education, and graduate at the age of 22 (barring any unforeseen circumstances). If this model were executed perfectly, it would be on par with many western democracies. However, the road to educational advancement for the Nigerian child is a perilous journey fraught with many unknowns.

Very few students follow a linear route through the Nigerian educational system; such that nearly 90% of students do not complete their first degree by the age of 22 years. Inadequate funding for state-led education institutions means that many children drop out before reaching secondary school as their parents can no longer afford the school fees.

Even those who successfully finish secondary school find it difficult to gain university admission; either due to the barring system set up by the Joint Admission Matriculation Board (JAMB) or the restrictive cut off mark set up by the institution themselves to limit the number of intakes. Furthermore, those who manage to gain admission into university then find that a typical 4-year course actually takes 6-7 years to complete, owing to frequent strikes from either the Academic or non-Academic unions.

It is widely agreed that this system is not fit for purpose. It produces graduates that are ill-equipped to face the challenges of society, rendering a large proportion of graduates unemployable and therefore increasing unemployment rates.

With the rise of private primary and secondary schools all across Yorubaland, we must ensure this Nigerian system is not replicated here. Education is a fundamental human right, so it is the responsibility of the government to provide free and accessible education to every child in Yorubaland.

In order to accomplish this, an appropriate pupil-to-teachers ratio must be established and then the government must ensure they build enough schools that every child is catered for. Where a child has no option but to attend a private school due to a lack of state-funded facilities in their local community, the government will be liable for the fees incurred. This will ensure that the government is suitably incentivised to provide adequate education facilities for every child nationwide.

Once provision is implemented for every child, it will become possible to mandate education to a standard level, and to enforce adherence. This new model will ensure that students are not kept out of education for prolonged periods through circumstances that are no fault of their own.

Tertiary education will also require overhaul. Introduction of colleges will enable those students who have not attained the grades required for university to take an additional year to study for and resit their exams, whilst simultaneously learning a craft. Those that obtain the required results from WAEC (West Africa Examination Council) and university placement will progress to university without the need to sit any further exams for entry.

The duration of a standard course will be reduced to three years, whilst special courses such as engineering and medicine will be reduced to four and five years respectively. This will ensure that the vast majority of students graduate by the age of 22, ready to become productive within the wider society. Those seeking to pursue further education will have the opportunity to study either a Masters or Doctorate degree, with a strict timeline established to ensure that students are not kept longer than the course’s stipulated duration.

To achieve this, the number of institutions will need to be increased: more universities and a college of education to be built in every town or city. In Lagos, for instance, no fewer than 120 colleges will be required to ensure the needs of every local development and local authority area are met. Likewise, rapid construction of universities will be necessary to cater for the number of students graduating secondary education. By my calculation, this needs to be no less than 50 across Yorubaland.

Achieving this would reduce the numbers of students seeking educational advancement in other countries, as they will have access to high-quality education at home. It would also ensure that the resources students would have had to expend on academic pursuits can be channelled into other areas of their lives.

This will result in a richer society at large, as not only will we have stemmed the ‘brain drain’ – the loss of our brightest and best to overseas nations – but we will also be facilitating these youths to invest in local development, instead of diverting resources into other countries’ academia and societies.

Finally, if Yoruba nation can create an education system that is able to contend with those of more developed countries, it will attract enterprising young individuals from other countries. In this manner, our society will be able to grow and flourish abundantly, established on the bedrock of sound education.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Opinion

Voice of Emancipation: Hiding in Plain Sight

Published

on

By

By Kayode Emola

What is happening to the Yoruba Nation Struggle? Is sovereignty still an attainable possibility? These questions and many more are on the lips of enthusiastic Yoruba begging for answers whilst awaiting the birth of their new nation. Rightly so, given that many of us in the trenches promised that there would be no 2023 election in Nigeria, as we would have already left the country. Alas, it is less than a month before the 2023 general election is scheduled; only a miracle will be able to thwart the election now.

How did we get it wrong? Why haven’t we got out of Nigeria by now? I don’t think this is the appropriate time to start apportioning blame. However, I do believe that if we don’t learn from the mistakes of the past, then we are bound to repeat them again and again. We must be mindful that a house divided against itself cannot stand. Therefore, those hell-bent on causing schisms amongst the advocates of independence are not only impairing their work, they risk jeopardising the entire struggle if care is not taken.

The solution to the Yoruba question is hiding in plain sight, yet it is so simple that only a few can decipher it or see how to implement it. Rather than focusing on the practical steps to get us out of Nigeria, some people are now being cajoled by meaningless slogans. Consider the claims of the Ominira Yoruba 2022 team, that if 5 million people signed a petition in support of independence, Yoruba would be able to exit Nigeria and nothing could stop it. The petition surpassed its five million target and yet nothing happened.

So Ominira Yoruba 2022 announced that they would make a declaration of independence and this would be the catalyst that would bring us our own nation. Yet no plan was put in place on how this was to be implemented aside from flippant announcements on Facebook and other social media outlets. When this failed to materialise Yoruba Nation, they then came out with Reclamation, and following its fruitlessness, then Occupation. The truth is that, no matter how catchy a slogan we produce, if we don’t have a concrete plan on how to get Yoruba out of Nigeria, we will continue on this trajectory of big grammar inside empty cannon.

The first step in achieving anything in life is to ask if anybody in the world has done the same thing already. If so, you can learn from them and apply their methods to your situation. If there are none, then by all means go ahead and invent the wheel, do some trial and error and work out a strategy to get you to the finish line. However, in this situation, there are many countries whose precedents we can learn from, including Norway/Sweden, South Sudan/Sudan, Czechoslovakia and finally, former Yugoslavia etc.

Whilst some of these countries exited peacefully, some had extremely violent departures. However, the key element was that they were determined to exercise their right to self-determination. The unifying feature that they all shared was that they all declared their independence from the larger, and dared to face the consequences. For some countries like South Sudan leaving Sudan it led to a long and bitter civil war; in contrast, when Norway left Sweden, the latter accepted the declaration of the former and they parted peacefully.

If the only option that allows for every indigenous nationality to exit Nigeria is through the declaration of independence, then the simplest and most logical route would have been to bring everyone together in consultation. In this scenario, any declaration of independence by one indigenous nation in Nigeria could be followed immediately by simultaneous declaration from other regions. This would dissuade the Nigerian government from attempting to take a stand against these nations or starting a war that they could not possibly sustain.

In light of this, what should we now do? We need to organise ourselves into formations, working towards the greater good. Those in the diplomatic circles need to intensify their diplomatic outreach to those countries around the world that will be sympathetic to indigenes’ independence. Whilst those in humanitarian circles need to embark on massive campaigns with humanitarian agencies, explaining the reasons why Nigeria must be dissolved

If we all come together with this resolve, then Nigeria would have no option but to let us go because we would have the support of our people and the international communities. Undoubtedly, we will not achieve unanimous acceptance from every country, or even across own our people; but those who do believe in the cause must press on until victory is achieved.

Therefore, my advice to those still being deceived by slogans and jamboree is this: open your eyes and see that, unless we do the work, no amount of camouflage or deceit can bring us out. We need to be ready to be open-minded, to put in the effort required to achieve success. Yoruba nation *will* come, but not by lies of ¬_”a tí gbá”_ (“we have collected it”) or “God has done it”.

Even if God has said Yes, if we fail to put in the necessary work, we will remain on this mountain for a very long time. The year of 2023 still has a long way to go: we can work towards something meaningful, or we can continue to deceive ourselves that Yoruba nation will be served to us on a platter of gold with no effort on our own part. A word is enough for the wise.

Continue Reading

Adding Value

Adding Value: The Power of Imagination

Published

on

By

Dear Destiny Friends,

Success and failure start from the mind. The human mind is like a rubber, the more you stretch it, the more it expands. The human mind is the brain, if you don’t use it, it won’t work. We all have the power to change the course of our life without allowing us to be victims. This is because the greatest power God gave us at creation is freedom and choice. Just like you have the power to think positive thoughts, you also have the power to think negative thoughts. It should be noted that whatever you focus on expands.

It’s quite unfortunate that many of us don’t know how we can use our mind to attract opportunities, if properly stretched. For the human mind to work at optimal capacity, it must be capable of using the power of imagination. According to Napoleon Hill, “whatsoever the mind can conceive, believe, it can achieve it. The right question we should ask ourselves is if we are using the power of our imagination.

Imagination takes several forms. The human mind can be artistic in nature, it can be creative, and it can also be challenging. The mind will only work on how you program it. If you program your mind to think like a leader, it will be activated, if you program the mind to overcome challenges it will be activated, if you program the mind to either think positive or negative thoughts, it produces the desired fruits for you.

You may be wondering where the power of imagination comes from? The power of imagination starts from the mind. To understand how the mind works, you have to look at the brain. The neocortex and thalamus are responsible for controlling the brain’s imagination, along with many of the brain’s other functions such as consciousness and abstract thought.

One may ask, is imagination the same thing as intelligence?  One can imagine something, but don’t take proactive steps to implement it, but the man who takes actionable steps can be regarded as an intelligent man because he got the inspiration and knows what to do. According to Albert Einstein, “The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination”. This is a fact because the true intelligence level of an individual is not dependent on the facts a person knows but on how he applies them creatively to solve problems in the world.  Albert Einstein further stated that “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”

The power of imagination cannot be overemphasized. One of the distinguishing traits between wealthy men and the poor men is their mindset. A big difference between a rich mind and poor mind lies in how they process information. While rich and wealthy minds have a positive and growth mindset, poor men have a negative and fixed mindset. While the growth mindset sees problems as opportunities to make impact by solving them, fixed minds see problems as obstacles to making impact. While rich and wealthy minds spend money to invest, poor minds spend money to impress. While rich and wealthy people spend after saving, poverty-stricken minds save from the remnant of their expenses.

This power of imagination works in different ways. Sometimes, it comes like a vision, a revelation. inspiration or even feelings. This imagination can be something you would like to change, or a cause you would like to work on. When you get this prompting, the best thing you can do is commit it to prayer and believe in it especially if it’s a revelation or vision you have been shown. It might look so big and impossible to attain. Whenever you feel this way, just know that you must activate your growth mindset.

Wealth creation starts from the mind. If you want to be successful in any craft, you must envision it in your mind. Most of the great people if not all the great people we celebrate in the world utilized the power of imagination to create a product. If you want to be rich or start a business, you need to take the bold step, if not, you’ll remain where you are.

Nobody can stop a person whose time has come. Nobody can stop you; you are the only one who can stop yourself if you doubt yourself or tell your dreams, vision, or ideas to the wrong person. The wrong person in this case can be your parents, friends, mentors or even your spiritual leader. Don’t get me wrong, these people may not be bad people, they may not understand the calling or vision you had. They may not even see you as the person capable of doing it because you don’t look it. They may be speaking from their experience which may not be your reality. Let me tell you, if God wants somebody else to get the revelation or inspiration, he will put the imagination in their mind. Just to encourage you, God does not call the qualified, he calls the unqualified and then qualifies you.

In conclusion, the power of imagination is a very powerful and creative tool a progressive mind can use to excel in life if properly activated. This is because nobody knows you more than you know yourself.

Henry Ukazu writes from New York. He’s a Human Capacity & mindset coach. He’s also a public speaker, youth advocate and creative writer. He works with the New York City Department of Correction as the Legal Coordinator. He’s the author of the acclaimed book Design Your Destiny – Actualizing Your Birthright To Success

Continue Reading

Opinion

Be Empowered to Remain in Power

Published

on

By

By Tolulope A. Adegoke

“When you “become” what money loves, you naturally command the attention of monies. Ask yourself, what does money love? Money cherishes VALUES! When you stop becoming valuable, what “values” attracts would stop coming to you! You simply fit into what soothes your actions, and into what your consistent attitudes deserve! So, you must keep “becoming” for what you desire or deserve to keep chasing after you! To “become” in this context means to “MANifest”! Chase excellence, and success would chase you pants down! Accept yourself in order to understand your being, so as to carve a soothing niche for a better version of “you” which you desire or deserve to become. Any other “you” in circulation is a counterfeit! Square up your shoulders and tell yourself “I deserve to succeed and God helping me, I will.” Remember, the sky is never your limit, God is!”Tolulope A. Adegoke, PhD., MNIM, FIMC, CMC, CMS

 Commitment has been described as dedication, steadfastness, allegiance, faithfulness or loyalty to a course, and individual, group or a supreme being. It is about giving one’s self to a course with success as the only option. Commitment binds you irrevocably to a course you believe in until success comes. It is not the same as mere involvement, but dedication to seeing a course(s) completed or fulfilled to cause an effect or impact either within one’s self, others, corporates and the world at large.

The world is filled with peoples. Anybody can be involved. Being involved in an activity that involves other people does not make you part of a team. As a matter of fact, it only takes a number of people involved in working together to have a group. You must understand that a group is absolutely not a “team”. The difference? In a group, people are involved in activity(s). In a Team, people are committed to a process and a goal. The difference between commitment and involvement is known by the difference in the “omelette and “corned beef”. In the making of omelets, the chicken is involved, in the corned beef, the cow is committed!

Commitment is the secret to the success of the postage stamp. To get the letter to its destination, it must first commit to the envelope. After that, the rest is a matter of time. A train gets to its destination because of its commitment to the rails.

Commitment operates in five major levels which would be expatiated below:

  1. Commitment to God (The Creator that gives to all that gives and receives)
  2. Commitment to a Course for a Cause

iii.              Commitment to Process

  1. Commitment to People
  2. Commitment to yourself

Commitment to God

Those who have discovered themselves in God have no problem committing to Him. Those who sideline God in success ventures will find out soon enough that it is the pathway to “frustration” and an insignificant “death”.

Commitment to a Course for a Cause

You must always remember that, you were never created to simply pursue wealth and all trappings of the worldly successes. After all your bills are paid, and you have a spill-over, what next? Highly successful and effective people, first of all, find a higher course for a greater cause for which they were willing to lay down their lives if need be, then throw themselves wholly into it. The principle is that, if death does not scare you, the possibility of failure cannot! As the Bible rightly said, “those who keep their lives lose it, while those who lose it, find it!” The other name for it is significance or relevance. Make money in order to enhance your platform(s) for significance or irrefutable relevance. At a recent time, Bill Gate has committed time and resources to finding solutions to the scourge of HIV/AIDS and poverty eradication in Third World countries. What he did caught the attention of Warren Buffet (who wasn’t reputable for charity), the World’s Second richest man at that time. This made him donate the sum of $37billion (US Dollars) to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. When asked why, he answered, “Because they know how best to give it away better and faster than I can.”

Commitment to a Process

Everything in life evolves. The only tree that grew to full stature in one day died the same day! Ask Prophet Jonah in the Bible. If you cannot commit to a process, you will forfeit the promise.

To master your skill in life, there is always a process of apprenticeship. Permit yourself to fail…but don’t remain a failure. The Olympic medalist who won the 100-metre dash in less than 10 seconds was only celebrated for what he had invested years of consistency and hours of practice to.

Tiger Woods had played golf as a child and he had always nurtured a vision to win every championship in golf. So he started to work towards that, easily.

The father (being a good Lawn Tennis Player) of Serena and Venus Williams (The World Lawn Tennis Champions) had coached them to always win since they were very young.

What the world celebrate today in these people is actually the process they had committed too long before they started winning laurels.

Commit to Yourself

Budget for self-development. Your greatest investment is the one you make on your personal development. When you are right, everything around you will be right!

Things don’t happen because you chase them to happen, rather they happen become you have become a center of attraction that commands the necessary attention. For instance, when you “become” what money loves, you naturally command the attention of monies. Ask yourself, what does money love? Money cherishes VALUES! When you stop becoming valuable, what “values” attracts would stop coming to you! You simply fit into what soothes your actions, and into what your consistent attitudes deserve! So, you must keep “becoming” for what you desire or deserve to keep chasing after you! To “become” in this context means to MANifest! Chase excellence and success would chase you, pants down! Accept yourself in order to understand your being, so as to carve a soothing niche for a better version of “you” which you desire or deserve to become. Any other “you” in circulation is a counterfeit! Square up your shoulders and tell yourself “I deserve to succeed and God helping me, I will.” Remember, the sky is never your limit, God is!”

Continue Reading

Trending

%d bloggers like this: