ASUU kicks over proliferation of illegal varsities

 Proposes N2bn take-off grant for new institutions

By Joshua Egbodo

Academic Staff Union of Universities ASUU has expressed serious concerns over the proliferation of unapproved universities across the country.
Speaking at a public hearing on some bills yesterday, organised by the House of Representatives Committee on Tertiary Education and Services, the union also proposed a minimum of N2 billion as take-off grants to new universities, stressing that “doing so will curtail the spread of satellite campuses.”
National President of ASUU, Comrade Biodun Ogunyemi, at the hearing, said the union was not happy over the subsisting legal framework on the establishment of new universities by the federal government.

He told the Committee that what was needed to revitalise the education “is a complete repeal of the National Universities Commission Act to conform to international standards,” adding that the “union believes that a review or outright repeal of university law is better and should be conceptualised with a view to make it better.”
The union also warned against delay or non-issuance of degree certificates to graduands by those institutions, saying that it “jeopardises their career prospects.”

The National Universities Commission (NUC) in its submissions explained that the Senate of University was the sole authority that “oversees issuance of degree certificates,” and that the agency “is currently undergoing a nationwide review of universities’ curriculums.”
Earlier, Chairman of the Committee Hon. Aminu Suleiman, said some of the existing Nigerian laws needed to be strengthened.
He also said the Committee “will act very appropriately on any chief executive of government agency that fails to honour its invitation to the hearing.”

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