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Stats: 1062247 members, 1234235 topics. Date: Wednesday, 22 May 2013 at 07:14 PM
|Oronsaye's Led Committee Advice FG To Reintroduce Fees In Federal Universities by GboyegaD(m): 4:32am On May 20, 2012|
The Committee on the Restructuring and Rationalisation of Federal Government Parastatals, Commissions and Agencies headed by a former Head of Service, Mr. Stephen Oronsaye, has made far-reaching recommendations which, it believes, could be effectively implemented to save the nation’s education sector from decay.
The most critical of the core recommendations of the committee after a holistic investigation of the education sector is the introduction of tuition fees in federal universities. Others are the merger of the National Universities Commission, the National Board for Technical Education and the National Commission for Colleges of Education and the scrapping of the National Examinations Council.
The committee identified the tuition-free policy of government for undergraduates in federal universities, the over-dependency on government funding by universities, near absence of good governance structures, dearth of quality research, decline in ethical and professional practices by lecturers, as among the factors responsible for the sharp decline in the quality of standards in tertiary education.
Others are the “politicisation of hierarchical positions in the universities, proliferation of part-time programmes, role of staff unions and absence of strong regulations for ensuring standards.”
In recommending the introduction of tuition fees in federal universities, polytechnics and colleges of education, the committee blamed the decay in infrastructure and learning in the institutions on the tuition-free policy of the FG.
The committee noted that the non-payment of tuition was found to have deprived federal universities of adequate funding, which would have been ploughed into improved education in the area of provision of infrastructure and educational materials.
Oronsaye and other members of the committee stated that while it would be difficult to introduce tuition in federal institutions after a long period of tuition-free regime, the step was one inevitable option that must be taken to prevent the education sector from devastating consequences.
They expressed deep concern that no Nigerian university was ranked among the top 1,000 in the world “irrespective of whatever matrix that was used.”
They added that the 2012 World University Web Ranking rated the University of Ibadan, which emerged top in Nigeria, the 30th in Africa.
The committee gave an insight into the most likely range of tuition fees that may be introduced in federal universities as it indicated that it costs N450,000 and N525,000 respectively to train arts and science students per session in Nigerian universities
Therefore, it recommended a five-year phased disengagement of the government from funding the top six federal institutions christened the first generation universities with effect from the 2013 fiscal year.
The institutions are the University of Ibadan, the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, the University of Lagos, Obafemi Awolowo University and the University of Benin.
The report reads, “Unlike in other climes where universities are rated among the best in terms of reputation and academics, the extant government tuition-free policy exempts undergraduates in federal universities in Nigeria from paying tuition fees.
“The committee noted that the consequence of such a policy is that federal universities have been denied adequate funding to contribute to quality education in terms of infrastructure and educational materials.
“The committee is, therefore, of the strong opinion that tuition fees should be reintroduced in federal universities.
“The committee is aware that the reintroduction of tuition fees would be very challenging having operated a free tuition policy for many years.
“Nevertheless, it is an inescapable reality that all stakeholders must have to face. This is because deferring the action would be tantamount to setting a time bomb that will ultimately go off someday.”
The committee urged federal universities to complement their funding by looking elsewhere for additional funds for the running of the schools in the event that the government withdraws its funding.
Among the recommended avenues for additional funds generation are “grants from wealthy individuals, alumni, endowments by corporate bodies, linkages and partnerships, community participation, investment income and other sources of internally-generated funds and competitive tuition fees.”
It was further recommended that facility managers should be brought in to ensure an effective management of hostels in the universities for which interested students could be made to pay economic rates.
The committee asked the FG to increase “the quantum of scholarships available to accommodate a greater number of brilliant but indigent students.”
It recommended the award of scholarships to deserving students by states, local governments, corporate bodies, philanthropic organisations and individuals.
Also, the committee recommended the merger of the NUC, the NBTE and the NCCE to form what it christened Tertiary Education Commission.
It recommended the empowerment of the TEC “to sanction defaulting universities and similar institutions as well as illegal degree-awarding institutions existing in the country.”
In the process of its investigation, the committee observed during the interactive sessions with NUC officials that the country had about 48 illegal degree-awarding institutions, which the NUC had not been able to deal with decisively because it lacked the powers to do so.
It was observed that the only option open to the NUC in such instances was through existing criminal laws, which the committee described as a very slow process.
“It is suggested that for more expeditious and effective results and with a view to maintaining the integrity of degrees obtained in Nigerian institutions, the enabling law of the proposed TEC should include the power to sanction illegal and erring institutions.”
The committee recommended that “the enabling law of the NUC be repealed and a new law enacted to reflect the merger of the NUC, NBTE and NCCE into the proposed Tertiary Education Commission.”
Oronsaye and his colleagues supported the amendment of the enabling laws guiding the operations of the universities to reflect their autonomous and self-funding status.
Apart from the recommendations calling for reforms in the tertiary education sector, the committee recommended the scrapping of the National Examination Council established in 1993 to take over the conduct of senior secondary school examinations in the country.
It was recommended that the functions of NECO be transferred to the West African Examinations Council, which is the body saddled with the responsibility of conducting examinations at the school certificate level.
It was observed that both WAEC and NECO were parallel examination bodies conducting examinations for the same calibre of persons within the same academic session.
It submitted that in spite of the fact that the two examination bodies were involved in conducting examinations for the same academic level of persons, examinations conducted by WAEC were found to be of higher quality than the ones by NECO.
The committee stated in the report that the continuing maintenance of the activities of WAEC and NECO at a huge cost to the FG was wasteful and inimical to the quest to maintain a high level of standard for which WAEC was reputed.
It was the contention of the committee that the West African School Certificate enjoyed greater local and international recognition as universities within and outside the country had offered admission to candidates on the strength of their WASC results.
It pointed out that pupils in secondary schools, who failed WASC examinations, had been found to perform very well in examinations conducted by NECO.
The committee, therefore, recommended, “The Act establishing the National Examination Council be repealed and the council’s activities be returned to WAEC, which was originally charged with that responsibility.
“WAEC should be the sole government-funded examination body to conduct certificate examinations.
“WAEC becomes self-funding with effect from 2013 and that the examination fees it charges be utilised to finance its operations.”
|Re: Oronsaye's Led Committee Advice FG To Reintroduce Fees In Federal Universities by GboyegaD(m): 4:39am On May 20, 2012|
The amount the committee recommended is highly unreasonable considering an economy where over 60% of her citizens live below the poverty line. The introduction of fees should be to reduce some burden on the FG and not create a burden for the citizens. However, before the introduction of the fees, there is a need to address how the monies collected by our universities from students are expended? We all know the economy is so corrupt as such, the reintroduction of fee with the current state of things would only enrich the clowns in the hem of affairs in our universities.
As for the NECO scrapping, I do not support it because I believe it was a way to break the monopoly of WAEC as such, my recommendation would be the need to bring the exam up to standard if the committee observed it was below standard.
|Re: Oronsaye's Led Committee Advice FG To Reintroduce Fees In Federal Universities by Odunnu: 12:50pm On May 20, 2012|
Who says federal universities dont pay tuition fees?
|Re: Oronsaye's Led Committee Advice FG To Reintroduce Fees In Federal Universities by dafoly: 1:44pm On May 20, 2012|
N450000 -525000! Na only deir children wan go school? Even private sch wey dey pay dat amount where dem dey 4 ranking OMG! dey're not even in d ranking,so wat's d point
|Re: Oronsaye's Led Committee Advice FG To Reintroduce Fees In Federal Universities by Buc(m): 9:33pm On May 20, 2012|
It is time we rise against corruption. If Tokunbo cars cost as much as 2million naira its clear d naira is not worth much. Learnt they are about introducing 5000naira notes. Corruption is Nigeria's problem.
|Re: Oronsaye's Led Committee Advice FG To Reintroduce Fees In Federal Universities by yusufcarez: 6:53am On May 21, 2012|
We no dey pay b4 ni?where d money we dey pay kom dey go?Abeg tell dat man say if dem pass dat law en,BOKO STUDENTS go erupt again 4 naija o.
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