BusinessDay

Poor fund management bane of Nigeria education sector – Minister

Nigeria’s minister of education, Adamu Adamu, says poor management of funds remains a major constraint in the development of the country’s education sector, especially in tertiary institutions.

Adamu said this on Tuesday in Abuja while inaugurating the governing councils of eight new federal polytechnics and six federal colleges of education.

Adamu said one key role of the council would be to ensure the judicious utilisation of the “limited funds allocated by the government” to the institutions.

Adamu also charged the councils to think out of the box and endeavour to generate more revenue, outside government allocations, noting that government cannot provide all the funds required to run Federal Polytechnics and Colleges of Education.

“On this regard, councils should enlist the support of philanthropic organisations, individuals and other sources of revenue through endowment for additional funding of their institutions, he said.

The minister further charged the councils to respect the principle of federal character in the appointment of members of staff. He decried that some polytechnics and colleges of education have become parochial and primordial enclaves and the concept of universalism in education has been jettisoned, especially in matters regarding staff employment. “The councils should work with the Federal Character Commission to ensure compliance”, he said.

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Adamu noted that the appointment of chairmen and members of governing councils from among people with proven integrity and experience in education and administration is one of the strategies for addressing the issues and challenges of tertiary education.

“The drive to revamp the quality output of higher education in Nigeria rests squarely on the shoulders of prominent citizens like you. We are confident that you will bring your wealth of experience, adherence to and respect for the rule of law and due process to bear in the discharge of your duties”, he added.

“Considering the calibre, experience, and integrity of the chairmen and members of councils being inaugurated today, I have no doubt that you will exercise these powers with great wisdom.

I must caution that the President and Commander-in-Chief of Nigeria will not hesitate to dissolve any council found to be corrupt and/or incompetent. However, with the calibre of men and women being inaugurated, I am hopeful that he would have no need to exercise his powers in this regard,” the minister observed.

The tenure of the council is expected to last three years from the date of inauguration.

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