Education, knowledge and power.

Byline: Dr Moonis Ahmar

Speaking during the inauguration ceremony of Islamabad National University at the Prime Minister House on December 21, Imran Khan again stressed the need for empowering the youths of Pakistan with better education. The link between education and knowledge is understandable. No nation can seek the threshold of power unless it excels in education and the pursuit of knowledge.

The PTI government seems to be single-minded in transforming its election manifesto into a reality by focusing on providing good, compulsory and quality education. How can better education and knowledge cause miracles and transform a backward and underdeveloped country to a First World country? The right answer cannot be sought unless there is a political will, determination, hard work, integrity and brilliance on the part of those who possess authority, resources and are in a leadership position. Rhetoric and speeches for political consumption or photo session can never ever change the destiny of a country.

One can figure out three examples spanning over a period of five decades which are sufficient to prove the linkage between education, knowledge and power. First, South Korea which was an impoverished country during the 1950s and 1960s but the policies enacted by those holding power gave priority to free, compulsory and good quality education. Devastated from the Korean war of 1950-53, South Korea took another 25 years to introduce short-and long-term policies focusing on economy, human development and education to the extent that its ministry of education spends $29 billion and 3.4% of its GDP on education.

The second example is Singapore. It was not only the leadership qualities of Lee Kuan Yew which enabled Singapore to emerge as a First World country only in a span of three decades, but it was because of priority given to provide quality education that transformed a Third World country to a First World one. Singapore's exports a year are more than the GDP of Pakistan!

China is the third success story as far as the triangular of education, knowledge and power is concerned. With a population of more than 1.5 billion people and the world's second-largest economy, China spends $675.3 billion on education as cited by its Ministry of Education. As a result, China has managed to excel in the quality of education and pursuit of knowledge. There was a time not in the distant past that hundreds and thousands of students from China were sent to the...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT