By Victor Emeruwa
Sa’adatu Umar was 12-years old when she had her first school experience in July 2016. Like other children in Yelwan, a sleepy community in Keffi Nasarawa state, education is an unnecessary luxury. No child is enrolled into formal school in Yelwan, parents looked eager to put their wards into school but there were no schools in the community. The closest primary school is about 5kilometers away on a bushy, lonely and dangerous path.
Then a primary school came. On the day the school opened its doors in 2016, about 90 education starved children rushed to take a front spot at the new Yelwan primary school.
The local government council soon took note of the school and made funding recommendation to the State Universal Basic Education, SUBEC.
Sa’adatu and other children in the community can now learn with minimal ease and hope that one day the SUBEC will build a permanent shelter for the school they so cherish.
Like Yelwan, the road to Abugye community is rough and dangerous. This community seats in the heart of a thick forest. There are no electricity, no clean water, no medical centre and no access to mobile telephone signal.
Abugye is home to more than 200 school age children, some of whom have been withdrawn from school because of the pain of travelling 3 kilometres to the nearest school.
Apart from its lack of civilisation, Abugye also has one distinguishing characteristics. “You can live here without money” says Yahaya Ibrahim, 37, the spokesperson of the community who claims he has not used money for exchange of any goods or services. “I have not used money for more than two years, everything we need is here” he enthused.
The community may have everything they require for their nomadic lifestyle but it is lacking in the essentials for building their minds and their future. They lack quality schools for their children.