Afe Babalola urges NUC to arrest operators of illegal varsities
Describes exclusion of private institutions from TETFund as discriminatory, unconstitutional
A legal icon and university administrator, Chief Afe Babalola (SAN), has urged the National Universities Commission (NUC) to arrest and prosecute those operating unaccredited universities in the country, saying their activities are inimical to academic growth and quality education.
Babalola, who suggested that degrees in sciences and humanities and other academic areas should be minimum qualification to study medicine and law as obtainable in Britain and other advanced climes, said that the best way to discourage illegal universities in Nigeria is by meting out stringent sanctions on operators, describing this as a veritable way to halt certificate racketeering in the country.
Besides, the university administrator has described the exclusion of private universities in the funding by Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) as discriminatory and unconstitutional. He said he had already written to TETFund to make his view known, adding that money collected from private and public companies for education of people who are going to work for the people should not be allocated selectively.
Babalola spoke in ABUAD yesterday while playing host to NUC team, who came on assessment tour and to evaluate the level of compliance to good governance in the institution.He said: “Get those operating illegal universities arrested. It is a common knowledge that there are many illegal universities masquerading as real universities. I urge you to recommend to NUC a more drastic action against the proprietors or owners of such institutions.
“Even in admission, 200 should be minimum mark in JAMB to secure admission to the universities, but the mark had been deducted and once JAMB allowed this to happen, then it has lowered the standard already.” The eminent lawyer urged the NUC to begin a process of ranking universities by itself to prevent fictitious organisations from hijacking the process and rate based on sentiment.
The NUC team Leader, Prof. Yekeen Sanusi, said the NUC would continue to strive hard for excellence by enforcing provision of adequate infrastructure and personnel in universities.
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