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There is no education exclusive to the West- Sheikh Zakzaky

The Leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky gave a closing lecture of the ’Education Day’ programme  on Saturday the 30th of March 2013 at Husainiyyah Baqiyyatullah, Zaria.

The Programme is annually organised by the Islamic Movement to address the state of education and way forward. During the lecture Sheikh Zakzaky spoke on education, the process of imparting the knowledge, its aim and products expected.

He said education comprises all branches of knowledge including health and spiritual development, and its aim is to produce Godfearing individuals who will be vicegerents of Allah on earth. This, he said, contradicts the western wrong notion on education.

He said in Northern Nigeria there existed a system of education before the coming of the colonialists which taught Qur’an and other books. There were also schools for spiritual training. With their coming, they disregarded it while calling its people illiterate and changed it with their system.

The educational system laid down by the colonialists does not mean education is western as there is no education exclusive to the West, he said adding that education originated from Islam being the root of knowledge and civilization. Moreso, the first 7 universities in the world were established by Muslims.

Since the aim of education is to have right indviduals who will be vicegerents of Allah it must be sought in the name of Allah as the Qur’an says ‘read in the name of your lord who createth…’; Education raises the status of human and for that there is no education exclusively  Western, though, the process and aim of imparting the  knowledge differ. It was this difference made our people hate the new education system because in it the name of Allah is removed;  it does not start with ‘basmala’ ie invoking the name of Allah, the Sheikh explained.

He further explained that the aim of going to school is not is to have a good job and a better life as some view it. This view makes people nowadays  abandon the education since they can get money without going to School through other means. He however,  said the aim of acquiring knowledge is to have a morally upright individuals who will live on earth as representatives of Allah. With this in mind, all branches of knowledge which a society needs must be sought in addition to fard ain ( the compulsory religious knowledge).

If the society lacks a particular branch of knowledge it must look for it even if it means sponsoring an individual.  The society must know the right knowledge to look for as well as the area it is lacking with view to improve.

The leader expressed his dismay with the current situation in Nigeria where there is no standard school run by the authority, a standard hospital or standard sanitation agency.

On way forward, the leader of the Islamic movement said, though the situation is pathetic, yet something must be done to address it. He added that people must make all necessarily efforts to give girl child proper education and training. He said, this is necessary because girl child will be the future mother and the first teacher to train her children.

He further decried the way and manner children are left hawking the street without education and proper training by the parents.  He also lamented the bahaviour of some parents whose only concern is to give their children all their material needs while leaving them without proper training.

Sheikh Zakzaky stressed the importance of teaching method and teacher training, calling on Education Commitee to  organise short courses on teaching methods for teachers as well as professional courses in order to bridge the gap.

He concluded by stressing the importance of girl child education for being future mother and teacher for her children.