Salim Umar, chairperson of Farmers and Herders Initiative for Peace and Development Africa (FHIPD–Africa), says bandits have killed more than 2,000 teachers in Nigeria since 2014.
Umar said this on Friday during a paper presentation at a workshop for staff of the National Commission for Nomadic Education (NCNE) from the north-central zone, in Kaduna.
He said activities of bandits have posed new challenges to the effective running of the NCNE for the past 15 years, adding that more than 1,500 schools have been destroyed since 2014.
He also said the situation had caused the death of many citizens, as well as inability to graze or cultivate farmlands by nomads and host communities alike”.
“The growth of extortionist banditry has added new dimensions to Nigeria’s educational sector, with over 2,000 teachers killed and over 19,000 displaced from their places of assignments, as well as over 1,500 schools destroyed since 2014.
“This negative development has resulted in an increase in out-of-school children and drop in new enrolments across the board in formal and non-formal sectors of our school system,” he said.
He listed inability of teachers to access their places of assignments, displacement of communities, occupation of schools by terrorists, and conversion of learning places into internally displaced persons (IDP) camps as the challenges facing the NCNE.
Also speaking, Bashir Usman, executive secretary of NCNE, said the increased rate of insecurity has contributed to school abandonment and the surge in the number of out-of-school children in Nigeria.
“The implementation of the nomadic education programme in the country is faced with numerous challenges, most especially, the issue of insecurity,” Usman said.
“The resultant effect of the insecurity on the programme include, among others, loss of lives and destruction of school facilities.
“This, therefore, has worsened the rate of high teacher completion and transition.
“It is expected that at the end of the exercise, reliable and valid data would be generated through the interaction with local communities and other critical stakeholders on the remote and immediate causes of the conflict and insecurity.
“Based on findings from the exercise, it is hoped that the commission would, in the future, train local communities on strategies to be applied in addressing the emerging challenges and response to the early warning of potential conflicts.”