Reps want CRK, IRK taught independently
The House of Representatives on Tuesday called on the Federal Ministry of Education to make Civic Education an optional instead of a compulsory subject for Senior Secondary Certificate Examinations, and should rather be taught under the subject “Government” as was the case under the previous curriculum.The House also resolved that religious component should be removed from Civic Education as a subject.
The House also resolved that national values should be separated from religious values and each should be taught independently.
The House resolution followed a motion moved by Honourable Beni Lar entitled, “Call to make Civic Education an Optional instead of a Compulsory Subject for Senior Secondary Certificate Examinations (SSCE)”.
According to him, “under the previous secondary school curriculum which brought a lot of discontentment, Civic Education was not a compulsory subject and Religious Education was taught as Islamic Religious Knowledge (IRK) and Christian Religious Knowledge (CRK), both of which were optional subjects.”
The lawmaker added that the Federal Ministry of Education introduced a revised curriculum without due consultation with parents and stakeholders and the new nine-year Basic Education Curriculum on Religion and National Values Consolidated Religious Education and Civic Education under National Values and made Civic Education a compulsory subject for Senior Secondary Certificate Examinations.
To this end, she said that, “the curriculum for primary one to three (1-3) which is the formative stage of a child does not provide for adequate teaching of the religious beliefs of the people but rather destructive half-truths which destroys the fundamentals of the religious beliefs and erodes the essence of such religion being taught the children.
She however raised concern that the new curriculum was in conflict with certain religious beliefs also makes the teaching of those beliefs compulsory.
Speaking further, she said “section 10 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 makes Nigeria a secular state, and therefore Religion should be separated from National Values.”
Contributing to the motion, Majority Leader, Honourable Femi Gbajabiamila said that executive arm of government should rephrase its policy in line with the constitution.
Honourable Aminu Shagari said that noted that since the policy was against the spirit and letters of the constitution it should be discarded, stressing that, “any law that is inconsistency with the constitution is null and void”.
Honorable Simon Arabo also said that, government policy should not be inconsistent with the constitution, while Honourable Hamman Pategi said that, “I believe that as a policy issue, this is where the executive and the legislature must come in”
Also speaking, Honourable Aisha Dukku said that no school in Nigeria would be allowed to teach the students IRK and CRK when that was not suppose to be the case.
The motion scaled through when it was put to vote by the Deputy Speaker, Honourable Lasun Yusuf who presided over the session.