Funding: Akintola faults Sanusi, says infrastructure as critical as education

Sakibu Olokojobi
Sakibu Olokojobi
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A Professor of Islamic Eschatology, Lagos State University, Ishaq Akintola, has faulted the Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, over his call on government to reduce the money spent on roads and other infrastructure in order to fund education more.

Akintola who is also the Director, Muslim Rights Concern, MURIC, in an exclusive interview with FrontPage, said much as he agreed with Sanusi that education was crucial, he believed that infrastructure was more critical.

Sanusi, who was Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, had, at the 6th convocation of Nile University of Nigeria, Abuja on Saturday, said: “We are spending too much money on roads and bridges and trains and too little money educating our children. Let us educate these young people and they will build the roads, train and bridges…

“We build all these highways and there are more pedestrians on the highways than cars and those pedestrians are most often people without education and help. Development is first and foremost about people.”

But while faulting Sanusi’s position, Akintola expressed doubt that the Emir was correctly quoted.

His words:  “I want to look at that comment with some caution.  Could he have said that?”

He argued, however:  “All the sectors are critical.  If we face education to the detriment of infrastructure, how do children get to school if the roads are bad and if the roads are flooded?

“If the bridges collapse, how can teachers get to schools?  So, I fault that comment.  I don’t think that it came from him because he knows the value of infrastructure.”

Akintola praised the federal government over its performances in the area of infrastructure development.

According to him, the government had done well in the area which Nigeria had been lacking over the years and should do more.

Stressing the importance of infrastructure, he said:  “We do not need to concentrate only on education.  Infrastructure is vital.  Imagine spending eight hours between Ibadan and Lagos just because the road is bad.”

Akintola added that Health as well as other sectors required the attention of the government to make life more meaningful to the people of the country.

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