Invest in research for national development, governor tasks tertiary institutions
Former governor of Gombe State, Dr. Ibrahim Dankwambo has said that Nigeria can attain economic prosperity and technological advancement if it moves to actualise a globalised tertiary education.
Dankwambo said becoming a global economic giant is achievable particularly if the potential benefits of the nation’s tertiary institutions are fully exploited to transform Nigeria.
The governor at a lecture titled, “Globalisation and the future of tertiary education in Nigeria” in honour of the Chancellor of Igbinedion University, Okada (IUO), Chief Gabriel Igbinedion on his 86th birthday said despite the huge investment in infrastructure, it is not commensurate with research, hence less impact on the envisaged benefits of globalisation on tertiary education in the country.
“We definitely cannot continue like this. Nigeria is the most populous, the most innovative, and the most dynamic country in Africa. It can take the lead in the tertiary education sector. This can be done if there is the political courage and willingness to truly make a difference.” Dankwambo said.
The governor said one of the biggest gains Nigeria can derive from a globalised tertiary education is for governments at all levels to focus attention on this largely untapped resources.
“This is therefore a wake up call for the government at all levels to focus on this largely untapped resources.
“One would think that this is not a problem until it is understood that Nigerians spend over one trillion every year to study abroad. We must note that Cambridge, Harvard, Princeton, Yale and Oxford, are not only for academic excellence of citizens of the countries that have these schools, they invest in their institutions so that they can earn revenue from foreign students from countries like Nigeria, which has destroyed it’s educational system.
“What would the city of Cambridge be without Cambridge University or Massachusetts without Harvard University? These cities depend on these institutions to survive.
“Recently, three students in Sweden conducted research and came up with a product that could improve wear and tear on tyres. The product became so successful that Volvo had to partner with these students to patent the product. Now, when this product hits world stage, one can imagine how much revenue Sweden would earn from the product.” Dankwambo said.
The vice chancellor, Prof Lawrence Ezemonye said the lecture topic is apt and timely in the nation’s effort to rejig its economy and educational system to becoming globally competitive.
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