A DISCUSSION OF THE KEYNOTE ADDRESS, “EDUCATION, PEACE AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA” DELIVERED BY THE HONOURABLE MINISTER OF STATE FOR EDUCATION, PROF. ANTHONY GOZIE ANWUKAH, AT THE ILORIN ROUNDTABLE ORGANISED BY THE FACULTY OF EDUCATION, UNIVERSITY OF ILORIN ON FRIDAY, JULY 13, 2018 AT THE UNIVERSITY AUDITORIUM
Dr Mahfouz A. Adedimeji, fspsp
Kindly permit me to begin by acknowledging the Honourable Minister for opening our eyes to the tripartite, interdependent and symbiotic concepts of education, peace and (sustainable) development. Without doubt, as the Guest Speaker eloquently submitted, these variables are crucial and critical to the survival of not only Nigeria and Africa but also the entire humanity.
I think it is thoughtful and laudable on the part of the Faculty of Education to have directed our attention to these three things that matter and I make haste to commend the Faculty, under the Deanship of Prof. Noah Oyedeji. I also appreciate the honour of being invited to contribute to the discourse.
Meanwhile, I want to specially note that as it is done in many keynote addresses, our Guest Speaker has laid the issues (education, peace and sustainable development) bare before us and expects us to apply the concepts highlighted to our situation. By this, he appears to me to be suggesting that rather than give us pittances of fish, he would rather show us how to fish as he opted not to dwell much on the situation of Nigeria. This approach is in sync with the submission of Sydney J. Harris that “the whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows”. Now we can see the reflection of our country in the window of ideas masterfully dissected.
The Chairman, Sir, it is clear to the blind and audible to the deaf that Nigeria today is heavily challenged. When the challenges that confront us and the problems that tantalise us are atomised, at the root of them all is education deficit. I especially find the emphasis of the Minister on balanced education instructive and refreshing because many of those who are educated today are not properly educated. The same way that a child that is not fed on balanced diet may suffer from kwashiorkor, many Nigerians who do not receive balanced education suffer from intellectual kwashiorkor.