Pail Obi in Abuja
The National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) on Tuesday suspended admission into the institutions’ law degree programme following the exclusion of its law graduates by the Council for Legal Education (CLE) from attending the mandatory Law School.
The Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof. Abdallah Uba Adamu, stated this while on a congratulatory visit to the Executive Secretary of National Universities Commission (NUC), (NUC), Prof. Abubakar Abdulrasheed.
Adamu, who was accompanied by members of the university’s governing council said the suspension of admission into the programme was sequel upon the advice by the NUC that students should be stopped from undertaking the course pending the resolution of the inability of its graduates to go to Law School like their counterparts from other conventional universities.
The Council for Legal Education (CLE) had earlier exempted law graduates of Open University from attending Law School on the grounds that the mode of study at the Open University was by correspondence or part time, and as such did not meet the requisite criteria for mode of study to be admitted into law school.
Adamu rather contended that such interpretation of the Act establishing NOUN by CLE was at variance with the prevalent global understanding of the mode of instruction associated with open universities.
NOUN VC explained that the institution is “an Open Distance Learning Institution which provides accessible, affordable and equitable education to millions of individuals who would work and learn at the same time due to their circumstances.
“We are praying to the Executive Secretary circumstances to draw the attention of the CLE to the fact that NOUN as an ODL institution, does not equate to part time or correspondence institution. In order to make things easier for everyone, we have accepted the NUC recommendation to halt admission into the programme until we streamline our activities with the CLE.
“For NUC to convince the CLE that we are an ODL institution, a proper and legitimate mechanism for education all over the world and in all domains, and therefore accept our graduates for admission into the Law School,” Adamu stressed.
Speaking, Prof. Abdulrasheed said NUC would seek audience with the Council for Legal Education with the view tomaking the council understands that NOUN is not a part-time or a correspondence programme.
“It is a policy of Legal Education Council to deny certain category of students from going to Law School. NOUN is an ODL institution; this is the future of tertiary education in the world.
“NOUN has come with genuine defence. We will have to adjust to this reality of this open and distance which is threatening the character and nature of our tertiary institutions in the country. Digital revolution is one of the two revolutions of the recent decade that are changing the world.
“We are going to make a strong case, draw the attention of CLE to the fact that NOUN is an ODL and not a correspondence programme. This is a new method of learning globally,” the NUC boss maintained.