James Sowole in Akure
The National University Commission (NUC), has developed a new blue print aimed at rapidly revitalising the university education in Nigeria between 2019 and 2023.
The NUC Executive Secretary, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed disclosed the new plan at the third convocation of the Elizade University, Ilara Mokin, Ondo State.
At the convocation, a total of 131 students graduated and out of which 18 bagged First Class.
Rasheed, whose address was read by Director, Quality Assurance in the commission, Dr. Noel Saliu, said the document was produced in a bid to rejuvenate Nigerian universities.
He said the development of the blueprint was thought on an extensive multi stakeholder base and that input were sought from students, parents, teaching and non-teaching, vice-chancellors and other stakeholders in the education sector.
According to him, data were gathered to determine Nigeria’s rank and challenges faced in the system atbpresent as well as to seek practicable and sustainable solutions to the challenges and the cost implication for the solution.
He, therefore, solicited support of all stakeholders, government, the academia, the industries and all well-meaning Nigerians “to achieve the strategic objectives of the blueprint so that the document will not go the way of past strategic documents that were not implemented.”
He disclosed that the NUC had produced the Code of Corporate Governance for private universities to guide the Proprietors, the Board of Trustees, Governing Council and university management in the governance of the universities.
He said the code was produced to tackle challenges of governance in private universities, saying the document clearly delineates the role of each level of governance structure of a university to improve university governance in Nigeria.
Commending the Elizade University for the feat achieved since its establishment, Rasheed said the commission was impressed by its axhievement despite its younger age
He said it has been a great delight for NUC “to see Elizade grow in leaps and bounds to its present enviable status. The federal government will continue to be grateful to the private sector for their involvement in the delivery of quality university education in Nigeria.
“The participation of the private sector has, to a very large extent, expanded accessibility of education to many Nigerians, even though the carrying capacity of all the private universities put together is less than the public universities.”
He, however, expressed the government belief that as the private universities “grow and develop, they will be able to admit many students as the public institutions.”
The executive secretary said the federal government was not just interested in increasing access, but equally achieving expanded assess without compromising quality.
He said since universities “are quality assurance institutions by design, they must be seen to reflect quality in all their operations, be it academic or non-academic in order to ensure that graduates of Nigerian Universities will be both nationally relevant and globally competitive.”