Ex-VC Tasks Varsities On Alternative Funding

A former Vice-chancellor, Usman DanFodio University, Sokoto, Prof. Aminu Mikailu, has advised tertiary institutions to device alternative funding to sustain tertiary education.

Mikailu gave the advice at a seminar entitled: “Funding Options for Sustainable University Education in Nigeria” held at Federal University, Birnin-Kebbi, on Saturday.

He also urged the institution’s authorities to identify innovative means in entrepreneurship programmes to augment inadequate funding of the institutions.

Mikailu advised the institutions to find ways of funding innovative research for senior academics, which were essential in promoting sustainable university education.

“Universities must identify the need for improved funding through innovation, self-reliance and entrepreneurship as necessary tools for their survival in the 21st century.

“They must as well as be able to charge appropriate fees, which are the surest way of boosting their IGR,” the former VC said.

He said that tertiary institutions lacked support due to difficulties in honouring the upward reviews of salaries and allowances as agreed by both the Federal Government and labour unions,

“Although, the current picture of education at the university level in Nigeria seems grim largely due to inadequate funding.

“There is evidence of significant expansion both in enrolment and number of institutions, from 360,000 in 2002 to well above one million presently,” he added

Mikailu recommended the launching of endowments, linkages with local and international NGOs and charging appropriate tuition fees at all levels.

He also suggested investments entrepreneurship and creating consultancy services units as panacea to address the issue.

The former vice-chancellor stressed the need to link up budgetary allocations with three key missions of the universities which were teaching, research and community service.

He said that a complete review of TSA and GIFMIS guidelines would pave way for greater autonomy of the university councils and management in accounting and application of funds.

He called for greater cost saving efforts through managerial transparency and adoption of new technologies, transparency and accountability.

“Both Managements and Councils of universities must continue to seek for greater autonomy to be able to source for funds and effectively plan and control the utilisation of financial resources and operate within the needed level of liquidity.

In his address, the Vice-Chancellor, Federal University, Birnin-Kebbi, Prof. Bello Shehu, called on administrators in the nation’s universities to device strategies on funding university education.

Shehu said that the institution was battling with meager Internally Generated Revenue and overhead, saying that the authorities have put in place far-reaching blueprint to transform the university. (NAN)

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