Nigeria backward because we vote “ immediate rewards over integrity” – NUT boss
Mr Gunshin Yarlings, Chairman, Plateau chapter of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), has attributed Nigeria’s poor growth to the tendency to vote leaders based on “immediate rewards”.
“We vote in leaders based on immediate rewards expected from them; we hardly consider integrity and the future,” Yarlings told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Jos.
He said that suffering had become the lot of the poor because they appeared contented with “small peanuts” offered to them by people seeking to control their resources,
“Instead of asking the politician what he has for us, we just ask for mundane things and vote them in.
“In some cases, even salt and soap are enough to convince us to vote people we know have nothing to offer. We shall never progress as a nation if we do not change and become more critical,” he said.
The NUT official urged Nigerian voters to focus on long term goals and shun the temptation to mortgage the future of unborn generations.
Yarlings regretted that politicians with brilliant ideas were often ignored because they had no money to throw around, and urged youth groups to step up enlightenment efforts.
“The youths own the future and must insist on changing the way things are done. They must change the focus and redirect Nigerians to the path of growth driven by modern ideas,” he said.
He called for more professionals in the teaching profession, and criticised the current situation where teaching was handled by people just marking time and waiting for better jobs.
“There are qualified teachers roaming the streets. We should engage them and avoid what is akin to engaging engineers to cater for sick patients in hospital,” he said.
Yarlings commended the Federal Government for discarding the merging of religious studies with civic education, saying that even twins do not bear the same name because they had different characteristics.
The NUT official urged governments at all levels to allocate 26 per cent of their budgets to education as recommended by UNESCO, if they were serious about improving the standard of education in Nigeria. (NAN)