The Nigeria Union of Teachers, an affiliate of the Nigeria Labour Congress, on Thursday asked the Federal and State governments to jettison the planned handover of primary school administration to the local government councils in the interest of peace.
While demanding a review of the nine-year basic education curriculum, the union also said the government should make the study of History compulsory in primary and secondary schools in the country.
The President of NUT, Michael Alogba- Olukoya, tabled these demands in Abuja, at a religious programme tagged, 2017 Solemn Assembly.
Prayers were also held for the peace and stability of the nation by the clergymen invited to deliver sermons at the event.
It would be recalled that the proposed Local Government Autonomy Bill, which seeks the return of primary schools to the local government administration, was recently passed by the House of Representatives.
The Senate, has however, refused to pass the Bill, thereby dashing the hopes of many who have always yearned for local government autonomy.
Olukoya said that although the NUT was not opposed to the proposed local government autonomy, the union insisted that that teachers would resist any attempt to return the management of primary schools to local government administrations.
To avoid plunging the basic education sector into a crisis, he recommended a reversal of the plan.
Olukoya said, “We want to plead and re-emphasise that we shall be taking Nigeria back into the stone age if any attempt is made to return primary education to the local government administration.
“As I speak, there is no local government that can run primary schools effectively. Do your research. There is no local government in this country that can pay teachers’ salaries and do other things without collaborating with the state government.”
According to him, while teachers are not kicking against granting of autonomy to the local governments, efforts should be made to create an agency such as National Primary Education Commission, which was established in the past to regulate that level of education in the country.
He also spoke on the removal of History from the Basic Education curriculum, adding that “abandoning History as a subject is a disservice to education and to the Nigerian child.”

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