‘University Direction’ Proprietor’s Responsibilities, DON Speaks.
The former Vice Chancellor University of Agriculture Abeokuta and the immediate past Executive Secretary of National University Commission, NUC, Professor Julius Okojie, has called on Government to relentlessly evolve pragmatic methods on behalf of tertiary intervention agency in order to accommodate private universities to benefiting from tertiary education trust fund share for the purpose of healthy competition, standard and sustenance.
The charge was given during the 7th Convocation lecture at Joseph Ayo Babalola University Ikeji Arakeji Osun State. The lecture titled ‘Fate of Faith-based Universities: whiter the faithful’, was calmly delivered by a colleague of academic repute professor A.M Balogun. In his scholastic approach, professor Balogun averred that faith-based universities could have performed better provided they have even access (like public universities) to tertiary education trust fund. The case of some Universities spending about #30 million monthly as support fund to cater for salaries and other expenses by the mission authority is comparatively discouraging. Even if it is a non- profit institution, it should have, from the institution regular remittance into its reserve to meeting unforeseen contingencies and other needs.
The intervention agency (TETFUND) which has its contribution majorly from private companies (private universities) should have workable percentage from such fund extended to this sector whose aim is the general improvement of education. ‘It is pitiable that these institutions that had resolved to partner with constituted authority in building human capacity development and productive labour force have been ignored in the disbursement of financial grants’ he remarked. ‘The role played by these institutions cannot be overemphasized, considering the alarming state of moral decadence, and dwindling value for moderation and diligence in our country’ he submitted. He however encouraged that the ongoing debate be sustained and that public-private collaboration be thoroughly worked out to creating a level playing ground for private universities.
He maintained that, the choice of direction of faith-based institution should be the proprietor’s responsibilities in order to engender the penetration of best practices and innovative ideas that ensures sustenance and standard. He warned various institutions’ board of trustees against needless interference and recruitment of mediocre in the management of university system.
Administration strategist as fondly called went further to passionately charged school proprietors about the importance of rendering community service to the people, which could help cushion the effect of the current economic hardship. ‘University can marketize for social peace and economic wealth apart from teaching and research’ he said.
He called on Founders (BOT) of faith based institutions to optimize ways for fund generation and eschew itself from every acts that constitute undue interference in the university management to allow for smooth and efficient management system. According to him, faith-based universities proprietors’ should also optimize the innovative fund generation strategies available to her as it is the only enduring panacea for shaping the future course of a university. He mentioned Harvard, Yale and University of Ibadan etc. as institutions that have made milestones strides and success through associations and determination.
To this end, the guest lecturer having traced the inception of University education from different epoch till the emergence of Nigeria’s first university in 1948; university of Ibadan, an off shoot of the London university college submitted that universities across board are all offshoot of one religious institution or the other.
While reacting, professor Imevbore thanked the guest lecturer professor Julius Okojie who was unavoidably absent for his support and word of wisdom so far relished by the school. Professor Z.J Adeyewa vice chancellor of the Redeemers University, while adding his voice admitted there are lots to be done, but JABU is adding value yearly. He submitted by praising Proprietors of Faith-based universities for the virtue of transparency and probity which is now coveted by public institutions.