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Questions Raised – Opinion – The Guardian Nigeria News – Nigeria and World News


The controversies generated by the current debates on the authenticity and veracity of past events in the country tend to confirm the place of History as a real subject in Nigerian schools. It is such a shame that millions of Nigerian students have been denied knowledge of their country’s history and fundamentals, thanks to a heinous policy removing the history subject from the school curriculum. While the enormous abuse of language has been corrected on paper by a policy reversal, it remains to be seen whether it has been properly reflected in practice.

The events of the past few years have shown that the lack of a reasonable understanding of history will only widen the chasm of animosity. In addition, the fact that history continues to repeat itself in many aspects of Nigerian life, even as officials and politicians confuse the facts of history to manipulate citizens, has plunged the country into crisis, a sad reflection of the poor state of historical knowledge among Nigerians. . Indeed, the crisis in Nigeria is now a crisis of inconsistency born out of the inability to know, understand and appreciate history.

Nigeria, during the 2009/2010 academic session, removed the study of curriculum history from primary and secondary schools. The official reasons are then given, among others, that the students avoid the subject; only a few jobs were available for history graduates and there is a shortage of history teachers. Sadly, Nigeria today has no official record of the civil war from 1967 to 1970.

Seven years later, the government decided the decision was wrong, and in 2017 the Nigeria Education Research and Development Council (NERDC) announced that it was on the verge of reintroducing history as a subject, from of the 2018/2019 university session.

NERDC Executive Secretary Professor Ismail Junaidu said the program would be stand-alone and would be taught from primary to JSS III after the National Board of Education (NCE) approved the subject’s reintroduction. In 2018, the federal government unveiled a new curriculum for teaching and learning the subject in basic schools across the country. The new program was approved at the 63rd RCE meeting, held in Kano in June 2017.

Given the events of the past 40 years, it would appear that the ban on the teaching of history in Nigerian schools was calculated, deliberately or not, to impose collective amnesia on the people and disrupt mentally the Nigerians. The World Bank could not mean it for the country when in 1980 it insisted on restructuring the curriculum on the pretext of the unsustainability of history as a course of study. Such a decision only paved the way for the economic dependence that Nigerians experience today.

According to Professor of Legal History at Obafemi Awolowo University (OUA), Ile-Ife, Dr. Akin Alao: “A country without a sense of history is a country without a soul. It could be safely said that many of the challenges facing state and nation-building efforts in Nigeria are the result of the neglect of history. The history of intergroup relations in Nigeria has confirmed the extent of interactions between ethnic groups or Nigerian nationalities long before the imposition of colonial rule. It would have been the duty of history as a subject in schools to bring these truths to young Nigerians to influence their understanding of life and the roles they could play in cementing relationships between groups. This submission is flawless.

The paradox is that the countries pulling the strings of Brentwood institutions have not and have not removed history as a subject from their country’s educational curriculum. In fact, it is even made compulsory in the first year in their universities. They are aware, like all visionaries of powerful civilizations, that history is the foundation of education, without which a country cannot and cannot grow. From the family to the state, history has been the great master of civilization. Children can hardly learn without a story; states cannot make policies without resorting to history. Thus, the claim that history is unsustainable for economic development is misleading.

As a subject of study and an intellectual means of political, social and economic development, history is viable, not only for mere certification, but rather on its importance for the intellectual renaissance and cultural renewal that will enable the educational system of the world. country to enrich the minds of young Nigerians. A good knowledge of history will allow every Nigerian to know that the country belongs to everyone, not just a bunch of troublemakers trying to falsely rewrite history; thus creating a space for a better understanding of Nigeria.

The story also hinges on the need for proper documentation for Nigerians of all walks of life, although this is acceptable. When the story is flawed in content or form, it can be corrected, as Nigerians have done in the past. Above all, it will allow people to move forward and solve problems with the respect and dignity they deserve.

The return of history to primary and secondary schools is eagerly awaited. In pursuit of this renewed enthusiasm, compulsory but authentic teaching of the country’s history should be pursued as a policy by the ministries of education, information and culture and their parastatal organizations. This is necessary to preserve the cultural and intellectual deposits of this country for posterity.

In addition, state governments, in collaboration with private sector initiatives, should take the ambitious initiative to create mini-history museums in the various headquarters of local governments, as is done in more enlightened societies. . It will also facilitate educational tours and present an ingenious way to get acquainted with history.


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