A former Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission, Prof. Peter Okebukola, has made case for improved funding of Nigerian universities to enable them to deliver better services.
The don said this recently at the third Distinguished Lecture of the Mountain Top University, Ogun State.
Speaking on the theme, “More investment, more harvest: Agenda for enhancing social responsibility of Nigerian universities,” Okebukola said a greater degree of investment would be required if the people of Nigeria were demanding better services from the nation’s universities.
He equally said the Nigerian university community would need to rise to the challenge of improved productivity, squeeze more mileage from improved funding and be creative in the internal generation of funds.
He said they should also be prudent in funds management and tell their stories when the dividends start rolling in.
He said, “The truth is that good things are happening in our universities and based on the level of funding they are getting, they are delivering very well.
“If we increase the level of resources available to them, they will deliver more and be more socially relevant. There is a direct relationship between the size of the budget of the university and the quantum of social relevance it can offer.”
The chairman of the occasion and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Prof. Abel Olayinka, also said Nigerian universities’ major hindrance to attaining world-class status was funding.
“For our universities to attain greater social relevance, there must be adequate funding. Investment is too low in higher education here and the crisis of underfunding has led to a systematic collapse,” he said.
The host of the event and Vice-Chancellor of Mountain Top University, Prof. Elijah Ayolabi, said with increased investment, Nigerian universities would become more relevant to the society.
“Nothing of precious value is obtained by chance. To have a society that is progressive and responsible, there must be a deliberate investment of same proportion. With more investment, Nigerian universities will do better,” he said.
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Source: The Punch