…Decries proliferation of universities in Nigeria***
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Unilag Chapter, says its vote of no confidence on the institution’s Pro-Chancellor, Dr Wale Babalakin, has not been vacated.
In a statement issued by its Chairman, Dr Dele Ashiru, on Saturday in Lagos, Unilag ASUU also said that Babalakin remained persona non grata in the institution.
”The attention of our union has been drawn to a surreptitious council meeting summoned by Dr Wale Babalakin.
”Our union wishes to remind members of the university community and the general public that the vote of no confidence on Babalakin and his persona non grata status on account of the unfortunate cancellation of the university’s convocation ceremonies occasioned by him has not been vacated by the congress.
”Consequently, he should be advised to rethink his intention of entering the university, as his presence may rupture the long-cherished peace and tranquility on our campus.
”Our union, therefore, respectfully call on the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu and the Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Universities Commission, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, to please rein in Dr Babalakin,” it said.
The union had after at a congress on March 11 gave the vote of no confidence on the pro-chancellor and declared him persona non grata in Unilag in reaction to the suspension of the university’s 51st convocation ceremony.
In the meantime, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has accused the Federal and State Governments of proliferation of universities in the country.
Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, the National President of ASUU, expressed their concern at a Town Hall Meeting on Saturday in Jos.
The town hall meeting was organised by the University of Jos chapter of the union.
According the president, the federal and state governments were establishing universities without adequately funding them, adding that some of the universities established were needless.
“Federal and State Governments are establishing universities without adequately funding them.
“For instance, why do we need a university of transportation or that of Information and Communication Technology (ICT)?
“All these can be taken care of by the existing public universities.
“So, the proliferation of university education will not help us; it is grossly affecting the quality of education in the country,” he said.
Ogunyemi further lamented that state governments have made the setting up of universities a constituency project, rather than centre of development.
He noted with deep concern that if care is not taken, university education in the country would go into comatose just like the current state of the primary education system.
“What we see today is that state governments have turned the establishment of universities to constituency project; every governor wants to have a university in his constituency.
“This is really sad, and if we are not careful, university education will collapse like the public primary schools in the country.
“So, what ASUU is really fighting for is to stop the total collapse. Our demands are not selfishly motivated,” he said.
Ogunyemi advised the federal government to fix public universities, saying that by so doing, such institutions can be spinners of revenue generation.
He urged the government to implement the recommendation of the union based on the Needs Assessment Report of 2012 and other demands of the union.
The town hall meeting attracted students, parents, teachers, journalists, lawyers and religious leaders, among others, as participants.