Omooba ( Dr) Olusegun Aderemi (JP) is the Atayero Of Aramoko Ekiti in Ekiti West Local Government Area of Ekiti State. In this interview with ADEWUMI ADEMIJU, Omo Oba Aderemi spoke on the fallen standard of education in the country and the need to restore the past glory. He also talked on the issue of power struggle in royal ascendancy, calling on government to always uphold the sanctity of victory of right candidate.
THE recent scrapping of Post UTME by the federal government has generated both positive and negative reactions in different quarters, what’s your position on it?
To some extent it’s a welcome idea. We have to look at the rate of intake in the university these days. Some are gaining admission while some are not. It does not mean that those gaining admission are more brilliant. The system has been bastardized so much that those who don’t gain admission are those that are brilliant but not privileged. The new system, at least to some extent, will enable the brilliant and the underprivileged to secure admission into the institutions of their choices. The one-way system of education is not helping the matter. Nigeria has only one system, which is academic. That is why students find it difficult to get job after graduation. To balance it, Nigeria should adopt the German system. Education system in Germany is divided into two: academic and technical. With this, students are able to choose their areas of interest and become self-employed.
School feeding programme was recently introduced by the government, do you see it achieving the purpose intended of it?
Utmost learning calls for conducive atmosphere. When pupils are fed and study in conducive environment, they learn well and have solid foundation. What kind of knowledge do you want to impart with poor condition of learning and low morale? I buy the idea to a large extent.
Education stakeholders and owners of private institutions have called on the government to extend the service of TETFUND to private institutions, do you agree with this?
Private institutions are giving the federal government helping hands in education. The pay back of university investment is between 15-18 years. It’s not that the business is lucrative. Most of the owners of university are helping the government and whatever the government can do to help them should be done.
What’s your assessment on tertiary education in Nigeria?
So many things have gone wrong. We need to go back into the drawing board, revive the lost value, bring back sanity to education in Nigeria. The past glory is lost. There are unemployed graduates everywhere. It is happiness to go to school and come back to get job, that’s even the joy of parents. These days, the children go to school and come back to become burden to the parents.
As the head of a prominent royal family, how do you think common problems of obaship (kingship) tussle can be nipped in the bud?
People are the problem. There are two types of Obas (kings): political Oba and people’s choice Oba, which is the one chosen by God. A political Oba is like a political office holder, he would rule. The one chosen by God and accepted would reign. A good oba is expected to reign. We need to do the right thing. The kingmakers, the politicians should allow the God-chosen ones to be on the throne. People are the problem. People change things unethically, but they can’t sustain them.