Felix Igwe, a university don, says the establishment of new universities will further reduce the standard of education in the country.
Mr. Igwe told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Port Harcourt that the universities were created for political gains and would be counter-productive to the development of the sector.
The don is also the Chairman of the Rivers State University of Science and Technology Branch of ASUU.
According to him, instead of creating additional universities, government should have provided more funds for the existing ones to perform optimally.
“I don’t think it’s a good thing to establish more universities when the existing universities are not properly funded and for them to function as they should to their maximum capacity; i think that is just political.
“You don’t necessary have to site a university in every village. If you develop most of the existing universities, they will have the capacity to accommodate and perform the role of development of the needed manpower in this country.”
He said the action of the Federal Government would further harm the education sector as manpower would be withdrawn to fill the new universities and thereby depleting the existing universities.
He also said the reason ASUU had on several occasions embarked on strike was to demand for more funding and an enabling environment for universities to succeed.
Mr. Igwe explained that the Federal Government should have copied the Ekiti State Government who pruned down its existing state-owned universities by merging the tertiary institutions to guaranty efficiency.
According to the don, universities have also been infiltrated by politicians and this has led to the non-performance of some tertiary institutions in the country.
“There is politicking into who becomes head and how the places are run. Some governors has looked at their state universities as one constituency project, and so the scholarship that is expected from such centres of excellence is no longer the case.”
Mr. Igwe also said the sector would experience progress, if universities were given autonomy to function.