By APN Agencies
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has backed a plan to sack more than 20,000 teachers who failed competency tests in the northern Kaduna state.
Mr Buhari called the situation tragic:
”It is a very very serious situation when teachers cannot pass the exam they are supposed to teach the children to pass. Is a very tragic situation we are in.”
The state’s governor last week shared the marked tests on Twitter saying that the teachers had failed examinations for class four – that’s the class for 10 year olds.
He said that the teachers will be sacked but they can re-apply in the fresh recruitment exercise if they believe in their skills.
The governor’s spokesman Samuel Aruwan has told the BBC that the process will be completed by February 2018.
He added that at least 19,000 applications had been received to replace the teachers who did not get at least 75% in the competency test.
Labour unions have however opposed the plans to sack the teachers.
They have given the state a two-week ultimatum to rescind the decision saying the move was propaganda.
Nigeria has the highest number of out-of-school children in the world according to UN children’s agency Unicef.
It says that about ten million children have no access to basic education in the country, and that the education system is beset by poorly trained teachers and a lack of proper facilities.