Edo State celebrated International Teachers Day on Thursday, October 5, 2023. To celebrate, Governor Godwin Obaseki joined teachers in the state at the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) secretariat in Benin City. The event’s theme was: The Teachers We Need for The Education We Want.
In his remarks, the Governor immensely appreciated the state’s teachers’ contributions to knowledge impartation to children. He also described them as the anchor of the Edo Basic Education Sector Transformation (EdoBEST).
According to Obaseki, “We would like to let you know that we have a lot of respect for you because of what you are doing for the future of Edo State. Our greatest asset is our human capacity, which you are building.
“You are the anchor of EdoBEST. With the transformation we have undertaken in basic education today, Edo is now a model to be copied globally. People come from all over Africa to learn how you have done EdoBEST. We will continue to review with our peer states and let them know what we have done and achieved.”
“We had challenges from the past, but the biggest challenge we had then was trust. You did not trust us for obvious reasons. Promises have been made that were not fulfilled over the years if not decades. But I thank God that in 6 years, we have built trust because trust is the foundation for anything in life. With this trust, we have changed the education landscape in Edo”, Obaseki added.
The Governor further charged teachers in the state on continuous capacity building and development to equip themselves with the requisite knowledge and techniques to build children that fit into the 21st-century world.
He said: “We want education for our children who will be living in the fourth industrial revolution, in the world of artificial intelligence, and who will not migrate from home.
“We believe we have already started grooming the type of teachers we need to make sure we have the education we want. We are connecting fibre optic cables to all the local governments in Edo State. Our plan is to make sure that every school is associated with wifi so that we can give more tools to the teachers to get information to pass on to these children.
“The type of teachers we need are motivated, teachers who will continue to make sure that our children are happy going to school, teachers who know more than the children they teach. So, they should be ahead of these children all the time.”
To mark this year’s World Teachers’ Day, the Governor promised that all teachers in the state would get a month’s bonus in addition to the 13th-month salary already promised to workers. He further pledged to consolidate the reforms already begun by his administration in education while praying God Almighty to grant him a successor who believes in education as well as the teachers.
On his part, the Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Edo State Chapter, Comrade Bernard Ajobiewe, commended the Obaseki-led administration for its regard for teachers in the state, particularly in welfare.
Ajobiewe states, “It must be noted that Edo State Government does not enslave and dehumanize our teachers, especially in the areas of regular payments of monthly salaries, Leave Transport Grant (LTG), incremental credit and other welfare packages.”
Also present at the event were Edo State Commissioner for Education, Dr. Joan Osa Oviawe, represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, and the Executive Chairman, Edo SUBEB, Mrs. Ozavize Salami.