“One of the things we haven’t gotten right in Nigeria is education and if we get it right, it will be the basis of getting a number of other things right. If you think education is expensive, try ignorance,” said former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
Obasanjo, who lamented the extent of decay in Nigeria’s education system called for all-inclusive reforms to effectively rescue the sector.
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He stated this when the leadership of the Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities paid him a courtesy visit at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, Abeokuta, Ogun State.
He said unless the entire system is totally overhauled and comprehensively reformed, the country’s education sector will continue to decline and dwindle.
The delegation, which was led by the Chairman of the CVCNU, Professor Samuel Gowon Edoumiekumo, who also doubles as the Vice-Chancellor Niger Delta University, Wilberforce Island, were in Abeokuta, Ogun State to intimate the former president on the forthcoming 60th-anniversary ceremony of the organisation slated for October 2022.
Obasanjo emphasised the need for more attention to be directed towards investment in education, adding that it is a critical factor driving innovation, technological advancement and employment opportunities
While recounting achievements recorded during his tenure as the nation’s No. One citizen, Chief Obasanjo canvassed for government at all tiers to make education accessible and affordable to all and at all levels.
Commenting on the process for the appointment of vice chancellor, Obasanjo urged the leadership to restrict itself to nominations and assembling the necessary credentials for the appointment of vice chancellors.
According to him, the appointment of vice chancellors should be the prerogative of state governors at the state-owned universities and the president for federal universities.
He said the would-be vice chancellor should be able to provide both academic and administrative leadership to the whole university and also have the capacity to secure a financial base sufficient to allow the delivery of the university’s mission, aims and objectives.
Earlier, the chairman of the CVCNU, Prof. Gowon, said the purpose of the visit was to tap from his wealth of experience as a reservoir of knowledge, who was once the Visitor to all the nation’s federal universities during his eight-rule as president of the country.