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FG Working to Ensure Schools Teach Science and Mathematics in Indigenous Languages – Ogbonnaya Onu



Minister of Science and Technology, Ogbonnaya Onu

While addressing pupils of Ekulu Primary School in Enugu, the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, said that the federal government is making plans to ensure that primary school pupils are taught Mathematics and Science subjects in their indigenous languages.


According to PUNCH, Onu was at the school to present computer sets and other science kits donated by the Ministry of Science and Technology to the school.

“The Ministry of Science and Technology is worried over the low interest in mathematics and the science subjects, so, we are working on plans to teach mathematics and sciences in indigenous languages in primary schools.

These pupils grow up with their indigenous languages at home before they start going to school, where they are now taught in foreign languages. So, we have observed that there is a challenge to understand the foreign languages first before they could even start understanding what they are being taught.

We believe that this plan will help our students to understand mathematics and the science subjects, and also promote the application of science and technology for national development,” the minister stated.

Onu added that the federal government was worried about the low interest of pupils in Science subjects, adding that no country can become great without science and technology.

Onu said that the Ministry of Science and Technology would collaborate with the Ministry of Education to develop the capacity of the local languages to serve as effective tools for teaching mathematics and science subjects.

“No nation can become great without science and technology. If Nigeria is to be great, then, Nigerians must embrace science and technology.

You can’t produce anything without science and technology. We are exporting our jobs by importing everything we need, and that is why our graduates are no longer able to get jobs after their studies.

For us to build the country of our dreams, for us to make Nigeria a truly great nation, a nation that is able to feed and house its citizens, a nation with a stable currency, we must embrace science and technology.

It is my duty as the minister of science and technology to make Nigerians to understand this,” Onu added.



  1. BA

    January 30, 2017 at 2:57 pm

    This is a brilliant move. Should work as it woke for major economies in the world.

    • LemmeRant

      January 30, 2017 at 9:59 pm

      No this is a very stupid and silly move. Infact its decisons like this that makes me think if this people actually have a brain.

      How many Nigerian textbooks are written in Native languages, how many of them can you trust. If they are now written in local languages. Which languages do we choose? (Igbo, Yoruba, Hausa) which one? And those are not the only 3 languages we have in this country.

      Assuming we can start writing standard high quality textbooks in local languages, what happens when the calabar boy moves to Lagos to study and topics are being taught in Yoruba.

      Do you know why Northern education is one of the most useless in Nigeria? – They teach them everything in Hausa. from English to Mathematics to Science. The students can’t compete outside their northern boundaries talkless of an international stage.

      We all can download books online, take online courses because English is not a problem. Imagine if we have to wait for tutorial videos, lecture courses, textbooks to be written in local languages.

      It’s like they want to intentionally keep moving backwards.

    • nunulicious

      January 31, 2017 at 1:12 am

      before ranting, please ask yourself, how many European countries teach their students in English language? The Germans, the French? The Italians? They all teach English as a SUBJECT. They are NOT taught in English. The Indians also and the Chinese.

      Education does not mean literacy in English language. With the way technology is going anyway, a more viable path would be to learn coding. The future of education is programming…and yes, you can learn if you study English as a subject,
      I suggest you watch youtube video what is education in Nigeria with prof Sophie Oluwole then you would understand why Ogbonnaya Onu is right. Without knowledge of history, we are bound to make the same mistake over and over again and still be colonised by the technology of the west.

  2. Diokpa

    January 30, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    Uncle, I beg to disagree. There is need for our Children to learn our local languages but not as medium of instruction for Maths/Science for better learning. Our Graduates are jobless as the economy is not stimulated. The real sector is the manufacturing sector but the growth is hampered by the power sector. We need 100% unbundling of the power sector so that Investors can build more power stations that will make more power readily available for the manufacturing companies and other industries to consolidate and increase production by employing more hands.

  3. abigirl

    January 30, 2017 at 4:22 pm

    Brilliant move. Too many raw and brainy individuals that will make a difference bleeding away becos they never get the opportunity because of English language barrier which they can never pass in jamb. Major disadvantage simply because of their level of understanding and exposure to the language. This should also be supported by translationtion of text books and teaching materials to local language or establish univeristies that cater only for these groups in each geo political zone.

  4. NG

    January 30, 2017 at 4:44 pm

    Robotics in Igbo =?
    Artificial intelligence=?

  5. NG

    January 30, 2017 at 4:44 pm

    We can try sha

  6. Tru

    January 30, 2017 at 5:18 pm

    This has GOT to be the stupidest initiative I have seen yet. We have over 404 languages, and quite a few are yet to be documented, neither do a lot of them have adequate translations for a number of terms in maths, science and technology. How on earth will it work? Has the govt insisted instead that each Nigerian child should learn at least ONE indigenous language AS A SUBJECT ON ITS OWN before pushing it to the wider areas of technology. English sef that is the universal language of a huge part of the international market is barely spoken well in our UNIVERSITIES, despite the fact that it’s our lingua franca! Have we tried to tackle this issue???
    Honestly, our leaders are ostriches. Every single one of them. I am so angry and disappointed.

  7. Omoté

    January 30, 2017 at 6:49 pm

    Dear Lord! Is this our problem now??? This what happens when people get positions as compensation or based on geopolitical zoning. After u people av sent ur kids abroad u will come n b making ‘yeye’ laws.

  8. nunulicious

    January 30, 2017 at 9:35 pm

    Ah han, bella, where is my post?

    I watched a video on youtube the other day that was astounding! it made me realise that the odu, opele and kola nuts that the Ifa priests use to consult the diety was actually a form of binary code known as boulean algebra!! BINARY CODE….a tribe in the jungles of Africa, in Nigeria had a form of binary code looooooooooong before they came! Then they came and told us that black is dirty and white is clean, that speaking english means being refined but your native dialect is retrogressive, that their method is the only way to get educated, that you can only learn science in english language.

    Chai, who sold us that lie? Who deceived us? when will Nigeria wake up? and take it’s role in leading Africa out of the doldrums? Why don’t we teach our history? damn!

    for those interested, in the link Tunde’s Kelani 2 part video of 10 minutes each on youtube….the mathematics of Ifa

    me I concur to this teaching our young ones in native language. The Chinese do it, the Indians do it and see where they are and where we are…

  9. NaijaPikin

    January 30, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    So this man now wants to assume schools in Enugu are attended by Igbo speaking folks only? Last time I checked, English is the official language of Nigeria. Have a brain sir and face real issues.

  10. sass

    January 30, 2017 at 10:31 pm

    I really think ogbonnaya Onu is going mad. First it was that Nigeria will soon start producing pencils. How will they teach pythagoras theory in igbo

  11. nunulicious

    January 30, 2017 at 11:39 pm

    Na wa oh, bella naija, why are you swallowing my comment na! this is the 3rd time I am posting it.
    Our educational system in Nigeria is fundamentally flawed. I watched a video on youtube which was astounding! The opele, the odu and the kola nut that the Ifa priest used in the divination of the Ifa deity was actually a form of boolean algebra…a form of BINARY CODE! (binary code by the way is the backbone of computers and technology)

    Can you imagine, we had a form of binary code loooooooooong before they came! Then they came and taught us black was dirty and white is clean, that education means literacy in English language and thought, that science and and maths can only be taught in English language.

    Biko, remember that the Russians who went to the moon BEFORE the Americans did not speak an iota of English! The Chinese, and Indians giving the west the run for their money are educated in their native languages first!

    For those interested, check the video of Tunde Kelani’s channel with the topic The mathematics of IFA with Tunde Adegbola

    bella naija, this is the 3rd time i am posting it, and I will continue to do so!

    • The Bull

      January 31, 2017 at 6:22 am

      The argument is that, Nigeria has hundreds of languages, how will this play out? which language will be universal? most of what is thought in the North is in Hausa, how are they faring?

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