FUPRE VC canvasses partnership on funding of education
Vice Chancellor of the Federal University of Petroleum Resources Effurun (FUPRE), Prof. Akpofure Rim-Rukeh, has urged the Federal Government to partner reputable public-spirited individuals, corporate bodies, national and multi-national organisations to broaden sources of funding for education in Nigeria.
Rim-Rukeh, who gave the charge, yesterday, in Abuja during a roundtable FUPRE convened on the development of universities in Nigeria, insisted that only viable partnership would enable the nation attain its projected educational benchmarks.
He also urged the government to encourage corporate sector investments and voluntary support to fund quality education in the country.
“The Nigerian experience has largely been a case of exclusive funding of public universities by the Federal Government, insisting that in the light of contemporary reality is no longer sustainable.
“Our direct response to the growing need to relieve the federal government of the overburden load of exclusive funding of public universities, which in the light of contemporary reality, is no longer sustainable,” he said.
Rim-Rukeh disclosed that the exhaustive and robust mind-robbing sessions of the roundtable presented a vista into the present status of funding of tertiary education, as well as projection into partnership and collaboration that could berth a culture of endowment and spending to match educational needs before it could translate to better educational outcomes.
Also speaking, Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, Ita Enang, who deplored the existing gap between research and industry in the country, insisted that government funding alone could not effectively support education to realise its objectives geared towards boosting and diversifying the economy.
“There is no gainsaying the fact that educational sustainability and progress of the country, especially universities are being threatened by sole dependence on the Federal Government,” he added.
Enang, who enjoined industry stakeholders to partner FUPRE in commercialising the local refinery it designed and fabricated, among other ventures, stressed the need for private sector players and public-spirited individuals to support tertiary institutions in raising additional funds for development of adequate infrastructure for optimal performance.