Former governor of Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi, has urged state governors across the country to return schools to religious bodies and perform only supportive roles.
Speaking during Anglican Diocese of Lagos Mainland Pre-Synod breakfast fellowship, Obi said the success his administration recorded in education was made possible by the churches.
He explained that during the first two years of his administration, the state’s rating in West African Examinations Council, WAEC, and National Examinations Council, NECO, was not encouraging.
Obi said: “I could remember that our state was number 25 in WAEC and NECO, while Oyo State was 26. The following year, we would alternate.
I looked at it critically and ordered that every school must be returned to the church. I said any money meant for education should be given directly to the Bishop.
“Between 2011 and 2013, Anambra was number one in NECO. Religious bodies are the only thing that is saving us in this country, and we need to support them and Nigerians also need to be prayerful for everyone in office; that they use public money for public good.”
Today, Anambra state is ranked first in examinations conducted in Nigeria since the state government handed over ownership of missionary schools back to the missions and funded them..
Corroborating his view, the Diocesan Bishop and Archbishop, Province of Lagos, Most Revd Adebayo Akinde, said God gave the church the custody of education as Christianity moved side by side with education.
According to him, nothing was wrong with present education system and urged government to desist from frequent experimentation. Meanhwile, Mr. Obi, weekend, said birthdays should not be a time of “show off, but a time to think about our lives and ask ourselves how faithful we have been to ourselves and God,” and provide Nigerians time to share love, “especially the poor among us.” Obi spoke when he joined the Anglican Bishop of Amichi, Most Rev. Dr. Ephraim Ikeakor to visit Holy Child Convent School, Amichi, Master Vessels School, Osumenyi and the Diocesan Hospital, Amichi, as part of his birthday celebration.
The celebrant, Bishop Ikeakor, expressed happiness that Obi’s love for education and provision of health care to the people did not wane even when out of office.