To start with, the reasons given by the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria for the redesigning of the 200, 500, and 1,000 Naira notes must be assessed and evaluated based on present realities.
The word redesign becomes an issue because it would involve changes that may not likely go down well with our ethnic, tribal, and religious persuasions.
Since it had the approval of the presidency various considerations must have been put in place to allay the fears of Nigerians on the suspicion that the symbols might be tampered with. If not let the needful be done, rather than putting the cart before the horse. Indeed, Nigerians had expected these changes in 2015. Sadly, it is coming at a time when the thoughts of Nigerians have been rumpled by several factors. However, it is better late than left undone because presently the focus of all Nigerians is the high rate of unemployment, hunger, poverty, and most important insecurity in the land. The major question now is, this change in the design of the Naira shall it be very effective? What would be the effects of this change in design on small and medium businesses? This is the time when the politicians are on top of their game with various antics to buy votes to attain juicy positions while taking advantage of the above-mentioned. The government ought to do the right thing for the overall benefit of Nigerians.
The Powers-That-Be had, in the course of time, lamented that age was a limitation to the capacity to deliver the much expected dividends of democracy to millions of impoverished Nigerians.
Indeed, in 1999, a presidential aspirant and a former Governor of Old Andambra state, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu had explained, stressed that no sacrifice was too much for national unity and progress.
This was after the merger of the Alliance for Democracy(AD) and the All Peoples Party(APP). Almost eight years later, the APP changed its name to the All Nigeria Peoples Party(ANPP) after the merger with the United Nigeria Democratic Party(UNDP), Dr. Onu was elected the party's national chairman and three years later, the ANPP merged with four other political parties to form the All Progressives Congress(APC).
Today, Dr. Onu, who by 2023 will be 72, remains the second presidential aspirant from the South East, after Dr. Alex Ekueweme of blessed memory, even though presently he is not a presidential candidate.
Interestingly, the former Old Abia state Governor has been a consistent and busy political ally of the Commander-in-Chief, all these years.
Of note, is the fact that Nigerians of the South East extraction have continued their agitation that Nigeria's next President must come from their geo-political zone, while the most prominent choice, to achieve this end, spends valuable time in the diaspora.
This is obviously a source of discomfort for several Nigerians, who believe that such action is unfortunate, in the face of urgent internal issues that remain unattended to.
Primary and Secondary schools have resumed for the third term and stakeholders in the education sector are expressing optimism that there shall be an improvement in the academic performances of pupils and students. In this interview the Founder, Spiritual Head, and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke advises the Government and teachers to be upright. Excerpts :
What is your advice to the government and teachers as the third term gets underway nationwide?
The third term is a decisive segment of the session in the lives of the students and teachers in every educational institution across the federation.
This is the period when students are evaluated through different examination bodies-internal and external.
The success rate in this term is a measure of the work done by the teachers. Teachers must be up and doing to ensure that the results of the students are satisfactory.
The Government on its part must ensure that the term runs smoothly without any disruption.
The Government is also expected to provide the necessary assistance needed by the schools in preparing and getting the students ready for their different external examinations.
The Government should also ensure the school environment is conducive to learning by providing good structures for the use of the students. The environment should also be enabling for teaching and learning.
Above all, discipline should be an integral part of any school administration to be able to check the excesses of the students and teachers.
Furthermore, the teachers need to be encouraged and appreciated as and when due to boost their morale.
The prompt payment of salaries and other related incentives.
It is very imperative for the government to adequately fund the education sector even beyond the stipulated benchmark of 26 per cent of the annual budget as obtains in countries such as Ghana and other progressive nations in the world. These countires have been able to achieve outstanding student performances to the level of the expected quality and standard.
The third term is underwayalready, students and teachers must be committed to the cause of very high sucess rates in theri various examinations through adequate preparations for it knowing fully well that the focus of all teachers and learners in the world today is on competitiveness in the global market.