Thursday, April 24, 2014

Corruption, poor governance destroy University of Abuja -FG panel

Published:

University of Abuja

The University of Abuja is a mockery of the university system, a panel set up to investigate the activities of the school says.

 

The University of Abuja, the only Federal Government owned University in the nation’s capital is so poorly managed that it is best described as “a mockery of the university system,” a panel set up by the Federal Government has said.

The main reasons for the poor standard of the University, according to the chairman of the panel, Theo Osanakpo, are poor governance system and financial impropriety.

The special visitation panel, set up in July by the Minister of Education, Ruqayyatu Rufa’I, to review the academic activities of the institution, submitted its report to the minister on Friday.

Mr. Osanakpo said the report indicated that the 2025 target set for the completion of the full master plan of the university might not be realised as only six per cent of the plan had been achieved after 24 years.

He said admission irregularities, lack of a governance system and lack of a proper accounting procedures are major challenges facing the institution.

“Looking at all these irregularities going on in the institution, I would say that UniAbuja is a mockery of the university system; the facilities at the mini campus do not reflect the funds that the Federal Government give.

“There are no sporting facilities for students, no good lecture halls and the facility is way below the needs of the more than 70,000 students of the institution running the undergraduate, post graduate, sandwich, part-time and distance learning programmes,’’ he said.

Mr. Osanakpo said that the staffing of the institution and the environment are very deplorable and the government needs to monitor the administration of the funds it gives for effective usage.

He also recommended that the Vice Chancellor be “bench marked” periodically by the Governing Council to guarantee standard.

The panel also recommended that prospective students of the institution must have the JAMB requirement and write the post-UTME examination to curb the excesses of irregular admission.

It also recommended that the Students Union Government, SUG be reinstated in the institution to allow for peer interaction which also enhances their productivity level and help to bridge the gap between students and the school management.

Responding, the minister thanked the panel for the report, saying that “UniAbuja in spite of its proximity to the education headquarters and the regulating body, NUC, has been a challenge.”

Ms. Rufa’i assured the panel that the report would be implemented and that within two weeks, the ministry would produce a white paper that would be presented to the president.

“The president approved this panel so I know that he would be glad to resolve the issues brought to the fore through this report”.

The Federal Government on July 25 inaugurated the panel to investigate the financial and governance system of the university, since 1988 when it was established, after the suspension of four courses due to irregularities.

The courses include medicine, veterinary medicine, agriculture and engineering.

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