Stakeholders Call for Quota System Review in Nigeria’s Higher Education

By Michael Peters, The Sight News

ABUJA: Stakeholders in the education sector are calling for the review of the current quota system policies in Nigeria’s higher Education.

This is just as they said, that the quota system has overstayed its usefulness.

The Stakeholders which cuts across experts in the academia, civil society and government, at a National Conference on Exploring the Effectiveness of the Quota System Policies in Higher Education in Nigeria, held that the quota system as it is presently constituted, will continue to stunt the growth of the sector.

They pointed out that, while other nations practicing the quota system have a transition plan, the Nigerian quota system has remained static with no exit strategy.

In a communique read at the end of the conference which held in Abuja, Otive Igbuzor, the founding Executive Director of the African Center for Leadership, Strategy and Development, maintained that the poor quality of primary and secondary education delivery in most educationally disadvantaged states, has continued to hinder the effectiveness of quota system.

Mr Igbuzor, noted that the Stakeholders called on Government at all levels to invest in the development of delivery of high quality primary and secondary education, through the enforcement of the Universal Basic Education Program as a means to create a stronger feeder system to connect young people to higher education.

They also called for the enforcement of a uniform and competitive entry criteria for all candidates to replace the quota system applied to the educationally less developed States.

The stakeholders in the communique, further called on Government to invest in improving the quality of teachers as well as increase the capacity of the existing institutions rather than establishing new ones as is the case in the country.

Earlier, the Director General, National Orientation Agency, Garba Abari had argued that the there was the need for the reevaluation of the quota system policy, as it has become a rather vexing issue perceived by the current generation of Nigerians as one of the greatest manifestations of injustice and marginalization.

According to him, “While it is unjust to deny admission to a candidate who scores 290 in the Joint Admission Matriculation Examination, into a desired course of study based on his or her State of origin and offering the same course to his classmates from another State who scored 180, would it be wise to have students from only a given State or region dominate a particular class?”

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