ABUJA – The Minister for Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman, has indicated the necessity for a review of the “Queen Primer,” a primary school textbook, which has been in the public domain for over 90 years.
Prof. Mamman, represented by National Librarian Prof Mrs Chinwe Veronica, acknowledged the concerns raised by the National Assembly regarding the inclusion of certain words in the text.
Speaking at a one-day roundtable meeting with stakeholders to present IPAS findings on the “Queen Primer,” Mamman stated that given the book’s age and availability in the public domain, it could undergo a review, edit, and be republished to align with current educational standards in the Nigerian market.
Hon. Abubakar Sadiq Jallo, a member of Jigawa State House of Assembly, recognized the validity of the lawmakers’ concerns but emphasized the importance of carrying along stakeholders in the education sector. He urged IPAS to conduct sensitization campaigns and collaborate with the Ministry of Education.
Country Director of IPAS Nigeria, Mr Lucky Palmer, highlighted the necessity of the roundtable meeting to address the National Assembly’s motion to ban the “Queen’s Primer.” IPAS presented research findings, clarifying that certain words, such as “Gay,” were taken out of context and were originally intended to be light-hearted and carefree. They called for a review to replace inappropriate words rather than an outright ban.
Deputy Director of the National Library of Nigeria, Mrs Olani Olabimpe, stressed the importance of protecting children who read the book, acknowledging that while some words may not have had negative connotations when the book was first published, a review is imperative in the current context.
Dr Mrs Olajumoke Olufunminiyi, a participant and teacher, appealed to relevant authorities to reconsider the ban, citing the book’s instrumental role in helping her students learn English effectively.
The highlight of the event was the presentation of IPAS research findings, urging a nuanced approach to the issue by replacing inappropriate words rather than an outright ban. IPAS called on the media to assist in sensitizing the public about misconceptions surrounding the book. The roundtable meeting emphasized the importance of collaboration and careful consideration in addressing concerns related to educational materials.
Toyin Adebayo is dedicated professional with over a decade experience of covering news and current events.
My background lies in gathering and analyzing facts about newsworthy events through stories, features, interview, investigation, and observation. My reports have featured in many National Dailies and currently with INDEPENDENT Newspaper.
Toyin holds a BA Ed in English Education, a member of the Nigeria Union of Journalist, National Association of Women Journalist. Married with kids.
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