FG cannot fund universities 100%, says Jonathan

Jonathan

President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria

President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria
President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria

President Goodluck Jonathan has told universities in the country to supplement government’s funding with their internally generated revenues.

Jonathan made the call in Nsukka, Enugu State on Saturday at the 44th conferment of higher degree and award of honourary degrees to three eminent Nigerians.

He said that government should not be expected to fund universities 100 per cent, as universities should make concrete efforts to complement government’s funding.

“The universities should make concrete efforts to supplement government’s funding by generating their own resources.

“Universities are also expected to prudently and judiciously use funds allocated to them to run their services.

“In clear terms, government should not be expected to take hundred per cent responsibility of financing public universities,” he said.

Jonathan said the third batch of the Presidential Scheme for Innovation and Development (PRESSID), who bagged first class from Nigerian universities, would proceed to 20 best universities in the world to further their education.

“We believe that such efforts will boost the level of research and human development in the country.

“I urge beneficiaries of the PRESSSID scheme to return to the country as soon as they complete their programmes to serve their fatherland.”

Jonathan expressed gratitude to Nigerians who had ceaselessly offered prayers to his administration, adding that such prayers had helped in achieving the successes recorded by his transformation agenda.

He congratulated the honourary awardees and challenged them to do more to the society that had recognised their immense contributions.

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The president applauded UNN for its numerous contributions in the country, assuring that his administration would continue to assist the university in its quest to restore the dignity of man.

The Vice-Chancellor of the university, Prof. Benjamin Ozumba, said the three eminent Nigerians being conferred with honourary degrees were those who distinguished themselves in their fields of endeavours.

He said that Mr Ike Ekweremadu, the Deputy Senate President would be conferred with Honourary Doctorate in Law.

And that Mrs Valeria Azenga, Secretary of the just-concluded National Conference would also be conferred with doctor of law, while Mr Musa Babayo would receive doctorate degree in Public Administration.

Ozumba said that Prof. Pius Okeke and Prof. Paul Akubue of the university would be conferred with Professor Emeritus for their outstanding contributions to UNN.

According to him, the professors have not only brought honours to the university but have extended their contributions in knowledge to the other parts of the world.

He said that 1,676 persons would be conferred with higher degree and diplomas, with 331 candidates in the doctorate category and 1,168 for masters while 177 had postgraduate diplomas.

Responding on behalf of other awardees, Ekweremadu commended the University for finding them worthy for the awards.

He pledged that they would assist the university in their various capacities to improve infrastructure and academics in the university.

“We have been challenged by this recognition and we pledge to assist the university and the country to move to the next level.