A video clip showing a primary school teacher in Edo State, Mrs. Augusta Odemwingie, who failed a reading test conducted by Governor Adams Oshiomhole, has continued to generate a debate on YouTube.
The clip is currently the most viewed out of the 68 videos available on the state government’s YouTube channel. It has attracted about 58,159 viewers as at the time of filing this report.
In the video — which is also a subject of debate on various social networking sites — the teacher could not read her own sworn affidavit during a teachers’ verification exercise, though she was alleged to have spent over 20 years on the job.
At a point, the woman pronounced ‘registered’ as ‘registrated,’ ‘declaration of age’ as ‘decreation of age,’ while she struggled to pronounce words written in the sworn affidavit that she allegedly submitted as part of her credentials.
Governor Oshiomhole kept correcting her pronunciation errors, and then, he paused for a while and asked, “Who is the teacher?”
Unable to restrain herself from laughing over the development, Odemwingie replied the governor, saying, “You are the teacher, sir.’’
In their reactions to the video, visitors to the channel described the development as utterly shameful and embarrassing. They said the outcome of the verification was a revelation of the enormous decay in the education sector as a whole.
Many of the visitors advocated an overhaul of the education system. One Sayo Ajiboye pointed out that with such teachers in the schools, a faulty foundation would continue to be laid for future generations.
“This is the tragedy of the Nigerian education system. A teacher that cannot read her own certificate verification affidavit! Where is the hope for the children that have gone through her tutelage?” Ajiboye asked.
But some Nigerians have blamed the development on the endemic corruption, which has forced many qualified youths who would have made better teachers to roam the streets in search of jobs.
A visitor named Adjarho Ejiro said, “The truth is, she can’t read and she is a teacher. Who hired her? Who did her screening? The pupils are the ones that will suffer. She did not even help the situation. She was laughing at some point and even arguing with other people.”
Meanwhile, some Nigerians have risen in defence of Odemwingie, saying there was no need to disgrace her publicly despite the fact that she failed the reading test.
“If he (Oshiomhole) really wanted to correct the teacher, he should have done it off camera. He wanted this to serve as a publicity stunt. What the governor did is wrong. There are better ways to handle such things,” a YouTube user, Bbqontherooftop, observed.
“This can lead to suicide. The woman’s kids could be mocked in public,” one Andy Larry noted.
But Adeola Oluwaseun-Adeyemi disagreed with them. She said, “It is sad that she was embarrassed this way. But her pupils are the priority here. Think of all the damage she must have caused her pupils. I think Oshiomhole did the right thing in calling her out.”