Kogi Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Mr Wemi Jones, says it is now an offence in the state for a child of school age not to be in school or seen hawking during school hour.
Jones stated this on Thursday in Lokoja, at a stakeholders’ sensitisation meeting on the newly enacted Kogi State Education Law.
According to Jones, the new law is contained in Section 9 of the Kogi Education Law.
”If any child is seen hawking or doing anything during school hour, that child shall be apprehended by the Special Marshals that will be put in place.
“The parent or guardian of such child (must) come to give reasons why the child is not in school, and we are very serious about this,” he said.
Jones said that the proliferation of private schools has become a source of concern and worry to the state government, adding that Section 20 provides and stipulates the conditions for school establishment.
He, however said that those schools that were already established and did not meet the stipulated conditions would be given ample time to process of establishment.
He said that henceforth, any private school that wants to operate in Kogi State, must register with the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS).
The commissioner said that all illegal schools operating in Kogi would be shut down as stipulated by the new education law.
”We are going to be closing all illegal schools in the state as we have been empowered by Section 20, subsection 3, of the education law,” he said.
He, therefore advised all proprietors, principals, head teachers of schools and other relevant stakeholders to study the enacted Kogi Education Law, and align with it.
Jones that the new education law would put Kogi education on the pedestal of acceptable global standard.
The State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Ibrahim Mohammed, who did the presentation of Kogi Education law, said that efforts made in the past to bring about the education law never materialised.
Mohammed, who was represented by Mr Adeniyi Moraiyewa, Director Legal Practice, Ministry of Justice, said the law would guide the activities of pre-primary, primary, and post primary schools in the state.
He urged relevant stakeholders to thoroughly study the law and ensure total compliance.