The All progressives Congress senatorial candidate in Ogun Central Senatorial district, Alhaji Shuaib Afolabi Salisu (SAS) is advocating a new approach to the funding of university education in Nigeria to mitigate the incessant strikes by the academic staff union of universities (ASUU) and other non-academic Unions.
The APC senatorial candidate who is also the immediate past chief of staff to the governor of Ogun state, Mr. Dapo Abiodun and the outgoing National president of the university of Lagos Muslim Alumni (UMA) made the call while delivering his valedictory address at the 33rd annual general meeting/congress of the UMA, held at the UNILAG central mosque, Akoka on Sunday.
Alhaji Shuaib Afolabi Salisu (SAS) said the current funding model for tertiary institutions in Nigeria is neither realistic nor sustainable, hence the need for a new approach.
He said “ASUU strike has almost become an ugly and permanent feature of the education system in the country with attendant dire consequences for the national manpower development, dreams of the students and their parents, and even the career progression of those in the academia.
The APC Ogun central senatorial candidate therefore called for the involvement of alumni associations and other stakeholders to come together and anchor a national education colloquium for tertiary institutions in the country.
He explained that “ It is time that Alumni Associations of tertiary institutions in the country come together and anchor a National Education Colloquium in conjunction with other stakeholders (ASUU, parents, students, government, employers, etc) to identify the dimension of the challenges confronting the education system in the country and proffer practical and sustainable solutions that will aid a new funding model, amongst others.
He further said “Whilst the new funding mechanism should ensure adequate funding that will provide a conducive environment for teaching, learning and research and commensurate compensation for teaching and non-teaching staff, it should also ensure that access to tertiary education is not denied to students from poor backgrounds”.
According to him, the adoption of this model requires new thinking and orientation from the stakeholders.
Ahead of the forth coming general elections, the APC Ogun Central senatorial candidate urged the elites to play a big role in shaping the national agenda by educating the populace on the need to reject electoral gratification and other primordial sentiments.
He said “we need to elect leaders based on competence, character, and commitment to public good. The elites can no longer sit on the fence or show apathy. The much-desired new national order starts with the right leadership recruitment”.
For the former Chief of staff to the governor of Ogun state “The forthcoming 2023 general elections presents the country with an opportunity to review the developmental trajectory of the nation, and define a new order of national priorities – through the election and re-election of a new set of leaders at all levels of government in the country”.
He believes that elites must redefine the agenda for Nigeria’s future by approaching the critical issues affecting the country with optimism and hard work to engender sustainable growth.