Rashid Aderinoye a professor of adult education with expertise in Literacy and open distance learning. He is a member of the Nigeria Academy of Education and a strong member of the University of Ibadan Muslim Community. In this interview to honour Asiwaju Tella, he explains why Iwo Muslim Community is under siege. Excerpts.
Why do you think courses in Faculty of education are not attractive to young schools’ lever?
I think generally when students are applying for courses in the Universities they rather pick courses like Law, Medicine, Computer Science, Pharmacy and Engineering, because they believed when it comes to education they would become a teacher and many do not want to teach. To them, the rewards of a teacher are nothing compared to the disciplines I mentioned. They only result to coming into the faculty after they failed the qualification requirements of their preferred courses. Many want to work in the banking and oil sectors rather than becoming a teacher. Unfortunately, government policies, low income and negative attitude towards the teaching profession aggravate such tendency.
Why a University admission is becoming increasingly difficult?
There are challenges in Nigeria educational sector. One is stalled facilities. In 1948, when the University of Ibadan was established, similar institution was established in the United Kingdom, but while Universities established same year with Uni-Ibadan had expanded in capacity and human capital, University of Ibadan remains static. Rather than expanding the facilities in terms of class rooms, staff offices and teaching-capital; we are establishing new Universities, thus leaving the structures to decay. So, since there are no enough spaces to admit the students as well as no enough staff both in academic and non academic, admissions would continue to be difficult. Except Nigerian government and operators of educational systems go back to the drawing boards and ensure that our Universities are expanded the future is bleak. The same structures that Uni-Ibadan started with are the ones still available for use despite high growth in population.
Sir what is adult education as a discipline?
It is a misconception, for people to think adult education is meant for adults that are close to their graves. We have different programmes in Adult education but, essentially it is about human capital development and giving opportunities to those who for one reason, or the other missed a stage in their educational pursuit. The course started as extramural classes, where those in government offices who are not well educated are exposed to workshops, seminars and conferences to sharpen their skills and for those who failed a level in their promotional examinations and giving another chance to those who missed out of their schooling at tender age to correct their abnormalities and bring them back to the mainstream. Furthermore, Adult education structures the principles that guide human relationship, social welfare, industrial labour and Distance learning courses for adults, who are already entrenched in their communities and cannot fits into the school’s system.
What are your views on today’s MSSN?
Some of us that were very active in MSSN of those days are no longer showing interest in the current MSSN. I think the current leaders are missing the points. Why a lecturer in the University should heads the organization meant for students? No it is very wrong. Then, it was a training ground to mould leaders in our communities. From the lowest platform to the highest, students members were trained to have leadership skills and were encouraged to aspire for any position. But now that is no longer the case. So my views are. There’s need to take MSSN back to it is original form and current members particularly the leadership should go into history of the organization to learn about how the MSSN greats achieved greatness.
What do you have to say on the personality of Alh. Tella has he becomes Asiwaju Musulumi of Iwo land?
He is one of those brothers that re-defined the old MSS. It is an achievement for his community to have him picked as their leader. Tella remains a good reference point of what brotherhood of MSS of old was. Till today, there is nothing we do, within that brotherhood that he will not participate. The title is appropriate for his personality. However, I will admonish that, he has to do more for his people because currently Iwo is under the siege of Christianity. The Bowen University in Iwo land is another advance ploy to evangelize and take many out of Islam. He needs his wealth of experience to take Iwo back to old days. I can only pray, Allah will give him the wisdom, long life to be able to impact more on his Muslim community and Iwo people.