A Bill for an Act to make provision for retirement age of teachers in Nigeria and for related matters on Tuesday has been concurred by the Senate.
The Senate concurred with the House of Representatives on the retirement age of teachers and Educational Officers bill 2019 sponsored by Honourable Adesegun Abdel-Majid Adekoya, representing Ijebu-North/Ijebu-East/Ogun Waterside Federal Constituency.
The Bill to raise the retirement age of Primary and Secondary school Teachers from 60 years to 65 has passed for concurrence at Red Chamber yesterday.
The bill which was sponsored by Hon. ADEKOYA ADESEGUN ABDEL-MAJID, representing Ijebu North/Ijebu East/Ogun Waterside Federal Constituency is seeking to extend the retirement age of professional teachers so that they can have more productive years to contribute to the development of education and dissemination of knowledge.
The report submitted by the Joint Committee set up by the House on the Bill was unanimously adopted by the lawmakers, after a public hearing on 13th of December, 2018.
Deputy Speaker, Hon. Yusuf Lasun, who presided over the session, put the report to a voice vote and it was approved unanimously. No single dissenting voice.
Leading the debate earlier, Honourable Abdel-Majid said that over the years, teachers had been clamouring for the extension of their retirement age as many of them still remain active and have more to contribute even beyond the 60 years age limit.
He maintained that the nation’s education is disadvantaged and have lost quality teachers due to early retirement of teachers without commensurate recruitment to fill their space.
The lawmakers said that most retired teachers still have a lot to offer and were often employed by private schools to tap into their wealth of experience, arguing that the older the teachers, the more patient and caring they become in attending to pupils and students’ needs, and the more likely they show empathy and understanding to their needs.
According to him, “the business of disseminating knowledge gets better with age, and the older the teachers, the more experienced they become, and their temperament also gets better in understanding the needs of the pupils and students. They also have more time to guide and mentor younger teachers along the line”
Abdel-Majid said that “the extension would also serve as a viable means of curbing the challenge of low manpower in public schools.
“The bill, when passed into law, would among other things, restore the lost glory of public schools and encourage teachers to offer their best,” he had said .
Most stakeholders in the education sector who appeared during the Public hearing including the Honourable Minister for Education who spoke on behalf of the President also expressed no objection to the proposed new teachers retirement age which also indicated that this might have an accelerated Presidential approval when transmitted to the executive.
It is therefore expected that Senate will approve after concurrence before sending same to the President for his assent.
-Solanke Ayomideji Taiwo