Vol. 2, Issue 6 (2017)
The impact of British colonial education on northern Nigeria: the construction of a pro- British oriented society
Author(s): Hamza A Garba
Abstract: This paper examines that the British colonialism which is the process of socio-economic and political domination of Nigeria in the early part of the 19th century, and the subsequent domination of the area Northern Nigeria in 1903, by the British forces made the area under British colony (Sokoto Caliphate). The objective of the paper therefore, examines that the induced western education by the colonialist made society to accept foreign cultural and social domination. Historically, the Sokoto Caliphate that was founded by Othman Bn Fodio was meant for the purification of Islam and the practice of Islamic education in the administrative system of the caliphate for almost three decade. Thus, the introduced Roman script and English by the colonialist as an official language made the area later on to becomes a British oriented society. Another colonial officer, Captain Merrick, who had initially supported the continuation of the Arabic, later argued for dropping Ajami script a book of writing Arabic in Northern Nigeria in favor of Roman script. The introduction of Roman script, not only resulted in the gradual phasing out of Hausa(Dominant Language in Northern Nigeria) Arabic script, known as Ajami, but also brought about fundamental changes in the educational and cultural development of the Northern Nigeria. The newly introduced “Boko” meaning western education shook the very foundations of Islamic education and stunted the rapid development of adult literacy as well as the long established tradition of scholarly writings in Northern Nigeria.