As NUC Holds a 2-day Retreat for Governing Councils of 42 Varsities
By Gift Samuel, The Sight News
Abuja -A High-level Executive Retreat(HER),organized by the National Universities Commission (NUC),is ongoing, for University Governing Councils, in a bid to interrogate and equip the key university governing organs, with well researched guides and global best practices to respond to challenges facing these institutions.
The retreat is intended to, equip pro-chancellors and Council members, including Vice-Chancellors, Registrars and Bursars, with current knowledge of trends and insights that would enhance quality decision making at executive levels of universities.
Declaring the 2-day retreat open on Tuesday in Abuja, the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, disclosed that the university system of any country is too strategic and sensitive to be treated like any other sub-sector, noting, that the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),will be a mirage if they are not hinged on solid university education system.
The Minister who was represented by the Minister of State for Education, Prof. Anthony Anwukah, appealed to the governing councils of federal Universities to end the decline in the tertiary education sub-sector, adding that it is unacceptable for the children, Nigeria’s democracy and the environment.
“You as chairmen and members of governing gouncils of federal universities, have the choice to make. The choice is whether you have the courage and political will to chart a better course for the university system, to deliver on their mandates of producing quality graduates who can compete globally or not and the decision cannot be delayed any longer .
“I hope that the retreat will spark off insightful discussions on the modalities we can adopt, to confront the challenges of our university headlong” he remarked.
In his opening remarks, the Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission(NUC), Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, said that governance is at the heart of higher education sector all over the world.
He however noted with dismay, that the governance structures and processes in Nigeria universities are characterized by poor leadership, corrupt practices, general under performance and inadequate teaching and learning environment and has constituted a stumbling block which has made it difficult for them to fulfil their core mandate, generate original knowledge, build character and contribute to national development.
The ES stated that, these and other challenges, brought about the two day retreat for Chairmen of Councils, Vice Chancellors, Registrars and Bursars of all the 42 Federal universities in Nigeria.
He urged them to relax, be open and receptive to new ideas and engage seriously with each other, so as to be better equipped to give proper leadership required to move the universities and the country forward.
Speaking on the Overview of the Nigerian Education System, the Chairman of the NUC Board, Prof. Ayo Banjo stressed that, for the Nigerian university system to deliver on its mandate, it is important to put it under constant review.
He further charged Nigerian universities to open their doors to West African students so as to improve their revenue generation, saying also that, for a university to achieve high ranking and improve its mission, it must be adequately funded.
“It is necessary for Councils to ensure that best practices are followed in the management of the institutions’ resources. Councils and Senate members have the responsibility to produce world class graduate and to place Nigeria on the world map” he quipped.
The 2-day retreat is for governing councils of the 42 Federal universities.