NUC Executive Secretary, Prof. Julius Okojie
* Inaugurates governing councils of 21 universities
By Damilola Oyedele
The federal government has issued marching orders to relevant bodies to remove Vice-Chancellors of universities who run unapproved programmes or courses in their institutions.
The Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), Prof. Julius Okojie, made this disclosure in Abuja yesterday at the inauguration of the Governing Councils of 21 universities.
Okojie added that unapproved programmes have create more crises than good in schools.
“The president and minister have given us the marching orders. Any VC who runs unapproved programmes would go. If we find it hard to remove him, we would get the governing council dissolved, and remove him,” he added.
Okojie lamented that some state universities do not have governing councils wondering how such schools would be administered.
“There must be good relationship between the managements and councils to run smoothly. Make friends to ensure that there is progress in the system, not to share the contracts in the system,” he warned.
The Minister of Education, Prof. Ruqqayatu Rufa’i, in her address assured members of councils of no interference in the running of the schools, she however noted that the president who is Visitor to the universities can dissolve them before the expiration of their four year term if found wanting.
She listed many issues in universities which violate laid down laws and Acts and urged the councils to ensure that they are stopped.
Some of the issues she said include the appointment of up to three Deputy VCs, non-adherence to the principles of federal character, creation of bogus portfolios and directorates to accommodate aides and cronies and non-prudence in expending available resources.
“These appointments are not for self aggrandisement. Honorary degrees and fellows should not be turned to chieftaincy affairs,” Rufai said.
She added that the NUC had been directed to monitor the schools and ensure that they are doing the right things.
The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Education, Senator Uche Chuwkumerije disclosed that the two common problems which the National Assembly oversight functions have revealed are under- funding in the tertiary institutions and non prudent management of available resources.
He also called for caution and ‘thorough thinking’ in the bid to scrap the National Examinations Council (NECO) and the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME) conducted by JAMB.
Some of the universities whose councils were inaugurated included the University of Ibadan, University of Abuja and University of Calabar.