The United Nations humanitarian coordinator in Nigeria, Matthias Schmale, on Thursday warned that Nigeria might not achieve the global agenda for inclusive and equitable basic education for all school children by 2030 due to poor funding of the education sector.
Schmale, who gave the warning at the launch of the Reports of the Independent Country-Led Evaluation of SDGs-3 and 4 in Nigeria, said the seven percent increase in the 2022 budgetary allocation for education was not enough to achieve quality educational standards in the country.
The UN required each country to allocate 26 percent of its annual national budget to education.
The Federal Government’s paltry allocation to education has been identified as one of the major causes of falling standards of education in Nigeria.
A recent report pegged Nigeria’s average budgetary allocation to education between 2015 and 2022 at 5.39 percent.
The UN official said: “In relation to SDG-4 on quality education, it is, for example, concerning to note that Nigeria is unlikely to achieve the global agenda for universal inclusive and equitable basic education for all school-age children by 2030 if the current very low public investment in the education sector remains the same.
“The evaluation indicates that the right policies (especially around free basic education and gender) are in place, but an increase in quality and access to education is critical.
“In the 2022 budget, there was an increase to 7 percent on education, but the evaluation says it will need to increase to 20 percent with clear accountabilities on delivery.
“Similarly, government resources for health financing are inadequate for the achievement of SDG-3 targets related to good health and well-being.
“It is good to see that the recommendation of revitalizing primary health care has already started and its effectiveness will be enhanced with a clear plan and accountability on human resources and financing at state level.”