The Federal Government of Nigeria has begun the distribution of 14 million textbooks and Library Resource Materials to primary and junior secondary schools across the country.
Primary one and two received the textbooks for English Language, Mathematics, Social Studies and Basic Science and Technology, while the junior secondary schools received Library Resources Materials.
Speaking at the event, President Goodluck Jonathan urged stakeholders in the country’s education sector to support government at all levels in the provision of a solid foundation for quality education.
Jonathan, who was represented by Vice-President Namadi Sambo, said government was determined to deal with the challenges in Nigeria’s education sector.
“All the stakeholders in the book and instructional materials chain, including researchers, who produce the textbooks; pupils and teachers, who utilise these materials; as well as parents, who exercise tremendous influence on the educational process, must adequately understand the inextricable linkage between the three components.
“I, therefore, call on all stakeholders to support government at all levels, to ensure that our education sector, particularly the basic education sub-sector, provides the solid foundation for quality education in Nigeria.
“We must do all we can to ensure that textbooks and instructional materials bring added value to our educational process. There is no better opportunity to make this clarion call than this very important event.”
Jonathan said the distribution exercise was part of efforts by the government to encourage collaborators and stakeholders in the joint efforts to improve the quality of education in the country.
He said that the procurement of the items had been an important feature of the government’s basic education delivery system.
According to him, government’s goal has always been to strengthen complementary interventions in the provision of quality programmes that will pave the way for acceptable standards of basic education output.
The President expressed the hope that government’s current financial investment, and the ongoing structural, institutional and governance reforms in the sectors would reverse the declining trend in the quality of education.
In her remark, the Minister of Education, Prof Ruqayyatu Rufa’i, disclosed that N16.6 billion was spent in the provision of textbooks and library resource materials for pupils in schools across the country.
She said the distribution of the instructional materials was part of government’s four year strategic plan aimed at improving the quality of education.
Rufa’i, who stressed the importance of the instructional materials to the success of any education policy, tasked the Universal Basic Education Commission to track the movement and usage of the books.