Dr. Samson Ayokunle, chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), has yet again protested the elimination of Christian religious studies as a subject in the new education curriculum for secondary schools by the Federal Ministry of Education (FME).
In a protest visit, last Wednesday, to acting President Yemi Osinbajo, in Aso Rock, Dr. Ayokunle declared "We are here to point your attention to a time-bomb, obnoxious, divisive and ungodly secondary school curriculum that the Federal Ministry of Education is introducing into our schools."
He said, the new curriculum removes CRK as a subject, reducing it to themes in civic education, but Islamic & Arabic studies/French, are full subjects. This ensures that Christian students must take Islamic studies or French. With no French teachers in secondary schools, the only option is Islamic studies. This he sees as an Islamization agenda.
He said the offending curriculum was suspended following earlier CAN protests, but is now being reintroduced without any review. He therefore demands return to the old school curriculum.
The issue has dragged on for quite a long while. It ought to be treated with transparent fairness and dispatch. I therefore call on the top officials of the FME, as listed below, to please come forth to publicly address and allay the fears of CAN:
• Mallam Adamu Adamu, minister for education. It is under his tenure, beginning 2015 when he was appointed, that the controversial new 9-year basic education curriculum was introduced.
• Professor Anthony Anwuka, the minister of state for education.
• Professor Ismail Junaidu, the executive secretary of the Nigerian Educational Research Council, NERDC. The new curriculum is its brain-child.
What is really going on? These officials should speak up. We need answers. Permit me to also ask: Why must one pay subscription fees (up to N12,000) to access and view the e-curriculum on the
NERDC website, nerdc.org.ng?
Before this matter degenerates further, let's hear from the horses' mouths.
By Ken Tadaferua