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FG approves two new private universities

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By Mercy Kelani

President Bola Tinubu granted approval for the licenses at the FEC meeting.

The addition of two new private universities in Nigeria has been officially authorized by the government, increasing the total count of private universities in the country to 149. Lighthouse University and the African School of Economics are the two latest educational institutions to open their doors in Nigeria. Lighthouse University can be found in Evbuobanosa, Edo State in the northwest of the country, while the African School of Economics is situated in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) of Abuja, Nigeria’s bustling capital city.

There are now a combined total of 274 universities in Nigeria, including both public and private institutions. During the award ceremony for provisional licenses to the Two Universities, Prof. Tahir Mamman, the Minister of Education, announced that President Bola Tinubu granted approval for the licenses at the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting on December 13, 2023. Professor Tahir Mamman emphasized the importance of aspiring for excellence in the academic programs offered by newly established universities, emphasizing the need for maintaining high standards in every aspect of their operations.

It is crucial for these unis to keep investing in infrastructure.

He stated that it is crucial to strive for excellence by implementing best practices in all operations and programs, leaving no room for anything less than the highest standards. He further emphasized the importance of maintaining high academic standards in Nigerian universities, even as efforts are made to boost enrollment. It is crucial for these Nigerian institutions to continue to ensure investment in infrastructure, equipment, and staff to make sure that they meet accreditation requirements.

Develop a nurturing atmosphere to support students in developing essential life skills and embodying values such as truthfulness, uprightness, fair play, admiration, self-assurance, obligation, determination, politeness, and good decision-making. The ministry is excited about collaborating with both the recently formed and already established Universities. The commitment of the ministry towards the creation of a University System that can successfully compete with other institutions across the world and reflects the best practices of the 21st century remains steadfast.

Nigeria will see a population growth up to 400M by the year 2050.

More so, he mentioned that he will keep a close eye on the NUC’s efforts in regulating the education system, as it is the only authority responsible for overseeing universities in the country. He believes that Nigeria will see a population growth up to 400 million by the year 2050, so it is crucial to start preparing now to address the needs of this future population surge. He expressed the government’s recognition of the crucial role education plays in the preparation needed for the future.

Furthermore, he emphasized that the government is open to collaborating with the private sector, particularly in the realm of university education. He urged educational facilities to prioritize the use of the Joint Admissions and Matriculations Board (JAMB) for admitting students to their undergraduate programs. Chris Maiyaki, the Acting Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), emphasized the important and distinctive contributions that private universities make to the Nigerian higher education system. He highlighted their innovative approaches, particularly as the commission works on significant curriculum changes to align with international benchmarks.

Related Article: More Universities Needed to Bridge Gap-NUC

Additionally, the NUC plays a crucial role in overseeing the creation of new private universities, which serves as a solution to the issue of unauthorized universities popping up in various areas of the country. He encouraged these universities to familiarize themselves with the governance regulations for private universities, as they are designed to improve the efficiency and longevity of these institutions. He urged the creators and the organization to view the project as a way to help society and as a personal endeavour, rather than solely as a means of making money.

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