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Byline: Wale Ajao
There is an urgent need for Nigeria to formulate and implement a literacy policy. The policy will guide all agencies involved in the various attempts being made to eradicate illiteracy.
The policy will also ensure proper co-ordination of all efforts being made to combat illiteracy. This is the view of experts who participated in a workshop organised for education editors.
The workshop took place at Halal Hotel Kaduna and it was facilitated by United Nations Children Education Fund (UNICEF) and the National Commission for Mass Literacy Adult and Non Formal Education (NMEC). The policy becomes necessary now that some of the agencies are under funded while one of them gets much funds. For example (NMEC) got N701 million in the 2008 budget.
The National Commission for Nomadic Education also got a paltry N750 million despite the fact that it requested for N1.5 billion in the 2008 budget. On the other hand the Universal Basic Education gets about N35 billion per year. Since the eradication of adult illiteracy is also part of mass education, there is a need for a national literacy policy to ensure harmonisation and coordination of all efforts and resources meant to combat illiteracy.
Yet another reason for a national literacy policy is the poor rating of Nigeria in virtually all recently conducted study of development programmes in developing countries. For instance the United Nations Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) has reported that Nigeria is one of the countries …