Tunde Bamishigbin was one of the few people I called my friends. His promising life was cut short in a very gory accident in faraway Anagoland a few weeks back. The accident, I was told, recorded about 43 deaths. Sad, isnít it?
As I sat through his funeral service and prayed to Almighty Allah to have mercy on his soul, I remembered one topic which always appeared in our discussions- education. He held the belief that the educated bloke in Anagoland is better baked than his counterpart in Asomdwekrom. I always disagreed, although I knew deep down that he was very right.
Wherever he may be, Iím sure he would be smiling now because Iíve finally eaten the humble pie. Allahís peace and blessings I ask for him!
Education, they say, is the key to success in life. True! It is very true because there is no other key but education. But the question that keeps dangling in my medulla is whether it is education or certification we seek in this country.
The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Asomdwekrom, Prof. Ernest Aryeetey, was recently reported to have said about 50 percent of the countryís university graduates are unlikely to find employment two years after their national service; and 20 percent of the number would have to wait for 3 years or more to get jobs.
If I heard him right, the good old professorís argument is that successive governments have failed to fashion out the right policies to solve the unemployment situation of the country. He also argued that existing policies are not likely to lead to any major creation of new jobs.
Maybe he is right; maybe he is not! But one thing I know for sure is that he failed to mention one major factor: The wanton desire by my compatriots to acquire certificates at all cost.
What our students do on their various campuses to acquire their degrees is an open secret. Who does not know that some students use bottom-power to get their degrees? Donít we also know that degrees in this country are now for sale?
The obvious result is that we produce half-baked graduates. And half-baked graduates, we all know, do not have a very bright chance of getting employment because no employer will like to employ an incompetent person.
Yes, I agree we do have very brilliant university graduates. But, even the blind can see that they are in the minority.
As the Assistant Headmaster of one of the leading schools in the capital, Iím privy to happenings in boardrooms during interview sessions. Swearing by Kwame Sefa-Kayiís Ďapamapamí, I say it is an understatement to say some of our graduates are half-baked. They are quarter-baked, if there is any such word!
At the most recent interview we conducted in my school for 23 graduates, none, I repeat, none was able to explain the phrase Ďin-house trainingí. Almost all of them referred to the phrase as Ďtraining we get from homeí, when it simply means Ďtraining within an organizationí.
One might say we were unfair to them because Ďin-houseí is not a common word. Maybe, we were! What of the words Ďbetweení and Ďamongí? Are those also uncommon? Trust me, they were all found wanting once again. They did not know that Ďbetweení is used for two people, and Ďamongí used for three or more people.
They also could not differentiate between the words Ďadviceí and Ďadviseí. They failed to realize that the former is a noun, and the latter a verb.
The commonest error I noticed was the use of tautology. ĎOr elseí and Ďshould in caseí easily come to mind. Most were oblivious of the fact that Ďorí has the same meaning as Ďelseí, so the two cannot be used together. Same goes for Ďshouldí and Ďin caseí.
Iím one who believes in giving people the chance to prove themselves. I, however, couldnít make a case for them because they performed miserably. I felt very sad but hey, na who cause am?
Do not be deceived, the problem is not peculiar to our young graduates. Some of our big men and women with big positions are also guilty of the Ďgbegbentusí syndrome. Their grammar is sometimes so powerful that it can bring the dead back to life.
A deputy minister, during a newspaper discussion on Metro TV, said ĎAsomdwekromanians prefer Agya Ofuntuoís government THAN Kufuorís governmentí. Very shocking, isnít? It is very shocking and embarrassing that a minister of state did not know Ďpreferí goes with the preposition Ďtoí, not Ďthaní.
Believe me or donít, I counted as many as 11 grammatical bombs released by the minister on the said programme- and those were blunders a J.H.S. 1 pupil in my school would not make. Obviously, the minister was properly certificated but not properly educated.
Do not tell me those were slips because I know what I heard. We all slip once in a while. Even law professors slip and say Ďecominií instead of economy, so I have no problem with slips.
Maybe, you saw the embarrassing show by some of our ministers and their deputies during the Parliamentary vetting in 2009. But if you didnít, do not worry. Just listen intently anytime they open their mouths, and you will not miss the sound of the B-52 Bomber, BOOM-RATATATATATA!
Source: Daily Guide
|Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect those of Peacefmonline.com. Peacefmonline.com accepts no responsibility legal or otherwise for their accuracy of content. Please report any inappropriate content to us, and we will evaluate it as a matter of priority.|