The National Universities Commission (NUC), on Tuesday, presented a provisional licence for the take-off of a new university in Kogi State
The new university, Confluence State University of Science and Technology, is located in Osaro in Kogi State.
According to the NUC website, the new university will be the 50th state government-owned university in the country.
Presenting the licence on Tuesday in Abuja, the Executive Secretary of NUC, Abubakar Rasheed, said the government of Kogi State is investing wisely to change the fortune of the state through the establishment of the university.
He said it is important for the state to have a specialised university that would focus specifically on courses that accelerate Nigeria’s transition into a knowledge-based economy.
“There is a need for a university that would be deeply rooted in science, technology and mathematics with a profile in medical knowledge and Kogi State would be one of the propellers in moving the country forward in the area of technology,” he said.
“Consequent upon receipt of your letter dated Nov.6, 2020, I write on behalf of NUC to inform you that with effect from Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2020, the Confluence State University of Science and Technology, Osara has been recognised as the 50th state university in the country.
“We also enjoin Your Excellency and the Kogi State Government to take full advantage of the professional and technical advice that the commission is statutorily required to provide on the establishment, funding and operation of the university.”
He said the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) and the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) had been fully notified about the establishment of the new university.
While receiving the licence, the governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello, said the university would help address unemployment problems in the country.
” Today we have universities that exist in the country but there is no specialised university. We have minerals resources, we have youth, women and a large population that seek for greener pasture across the country. By the time students graduate from Confluence State University of Science and Technology, you would not need to wait for any employment. You will be self-employed,” he said.
The governor said the fund to drive the take-off of the university had been put in place, pledging that funding the university would not pose any challenge for the state.“The mineral resources that exist in the state and Nigeria, we will not need exporting them outside the country again. We are going to utilise our resources and we are going to produce students that will drive the economy in terms of knowledge,” Mr Bello said.
Speaking on how the university came about, the governor said, “I conceived the idea and raised an executive bill to the Kogi State Assembly, it was passed and we signed it into law.
“When we started this project, we considered funding and it is well taken into consideration as is it contained in the law. I want to assure you that Confluence State University of Science and Technology will be well funded and it is going to move with the speed of light,” he said.
The NUC website stated that Nigeria has 44 federal Universities, 79 private universities. In total, the country has 172 universities.
However, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has condemned the poor funding of public universities and criticised the establishment of new universities when existing ones are not well funded.