Representative of the Visitor, the Honorable Minister of Education, Prof. (Mrs.) Ruqayyatu Ahmed Rufa’i (Left) with the Vice-Chanellor, Prof. Oluwafemi Olaiya Balogun
The President, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has given the go-ahead for the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, to widen its scope of academic programmes, immediately.
The President, who is the Visitor to the University gave the nod in his speech at the 18th and 19th Combined Convocation Ceremonies of the University, last Saturday, in Abeokuta.
Speaking through the Minister of Education, Prof. (Mrs.) Ruqayyatu Ahmed Rufa’i, Dr. Jonathan mandated the University and others in its category to review their academic curricula, saying, “I encourage the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta and others in its category that is currently operating as specialized institutions, to diversify and expand their operational boundaries”.
The President said the call became imperative, as the country would require to overhaul its higher education system, if it intends to free itself from the shackles of underdevelopment and upturn the myriad of social malaise that had hitherto contributed to its impoverishment in critical areas of development”.
According to Dr. Jonathan, “For our country to free itself from the shackles of underdevelopment, upturn the myriad of social malaise that had hitherto contributed to our impoverishment in critical areas of development, it is imperative that our higher educational system must be completely overhauled and made once more potent as a virile tool for advancement.
As such the establishment and existence of Universities in the country should no longer be seen as serving parochial interests of political patronage or for pecuniary benefits, but rather on the merit of their value addition to meaningful socio-economic re-awakening”.
Dr. Jonathan reiterated the value his administration placed on the re-engineering of the nation’s educational sector, particularly the Universities, as a deliberate effort of ensuring unrestricted access to education.
He therefore charged that the expansion of the curricula scope of the University should be done in such a way that can facilitate adequate cultivation of the vast academic potentials of the youths, thereby improving on human resource development for optimal productivity.
The Visitor further challenged Universities to justify the huge Government’s investment on them, “by ensuring a responsive educational regime capable of contributing to developmental innovation, enhanced manpower and economic growth”.
While congratulating the graduands, the President admonished the students and youths, not to yield to the deceits of misguided elements that may wish to subvert the will of the people, during the forthcoming general elections.
In his speech at the Convocation, the Chancellor and Asagba of Asaba, Obi (Prof.) Chike Edozien, lauded the phenomenal growth recorded by the University within the last three years, describing it as unprecedented in the annals of the institution.