The Dislocation in Nigeria’s Education Funding

The Dislocation in Nigeria’s Education Funding

Nigeria’s education sector paralysis is not just funding. Our incentives are wrong. University professors strike largely yearly for more funding. I am not aware of any strike involving primary school teachers who go at minimum wage between $50 to $90 monthly. Our current trajectory will not help the nation.

China has 99% primary education enrollment with less than 10% university attainment. They put all the good money in primary education. America does the same where primary and secondary are largely free. But in Nigeria, we flip it, taking care of few to the detriment of many. Why should a professor be paid $2,000 per month when a primary school teacher cannot even get $90 monthly? The most important education is primary education. Yet, from state to federal levels, Nigeria continues to pump more money into universities, leaving primary and secondary severely underfunded.

The U.S. and China will subsidize primary and secondary education making both largely free. For the university, you are on your own: take a loan or stay home if you cannot afford it. In Nigeria, we flip it; subsidizing university education and in the process deny millions the abilities to read and write.

Nigeria’s Big Challenge on Human Development


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One thought on “The Dislocation in Nigeria’s Education Funding

  1. We always like sending help to those who don’t need it, and the very people who need it don’t get it.

    Any university that cannot fend for itself is not worthy to be called a university, yet we keep bankrolling universities here, as if a university education is a fundamental human right. Everything is wrong with our understanding of life and decent society.

    The primary and secondary schools cannot fend for themselves, because every responsible nation needs do well there, but we underfund them and keep debating how much more money the universities should get, unbelievable!

    A university is a citadel of learning, known for research, teaching and learning; if it cannot sort itself out, it means it neither researches nor teaches anything, because if it does well, it will attract funds from far and near.

    Some of us have clarity on how education sector should function here, it doesn’t require writing thousands of pages of documents, but outlining what is credible and valuable, and, implementing faithfully.

    The job potential in that sector is massive, but we need to spend our money well. If you start paying primary and secondary teachers from N150k, many will quit bank and oil jobs and go there; the finest minds will flock there.


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