Abuja - The Committee of Pro-Chancellors
of Federal Universities on Friday called for the introduction of tuition in
Federal universities to support funding of the universities.
This is contained in a communiqué signed by Prof. Kimse
Okoko, Chairman of the committee, in Abuja.
The communiqué decried the resistance to introduce tuition
in some universities by the Academic Staff Union of Universities and Students’
According to the communiqué, the resistance is based on the
argument that the introduction of tuition may take university education beyond
the reach of the poor.
It stated that avenues for finance for indigent students
includes the revival of the student loans schemes, bursaries and scholarship,
education bank, among other initiatives, should be put in place.
The communiqué also stated that students who could afford to
pay should be allowed to do so.
It also stressed the need to reposition the Nigerian public
university system for global competitiveness in the 21st century, adding
that increase funding was critical to achieve the repositioning.
The pro-chancellor said that government could not
single-handedly fund the university system and pull it out of its current state
of rot in spite of its best efforts and intentions.
The communiqué resolved that universities must explored new
sources of funding, such as grants from local and multilateral agencies and
joint venture investments.
It also urged the universities to explore facilities in the
capital market, endowments, research for industries, and alumni endowments,
The pro-chancellor urged universities to be more
entrepreneurial in their operations and leverage on their areas of comparative
advantage to partner with industries in their localities.
"The university councils should endeavour to work within
the present constraints to initiate new directions, working within the laws
that established them,’’ it stated.
It further urged government to boost the
internally-generated revenue of universities and enhance their relevance.
The committee of pro-chancellor advised governments to
patronise university departments and consultancy services in the execution of
contracts and to involve universities in collaborative research with potential
to directly impact on national development.
It also advised universities’ councils to take steps to
increase their internally-generated revenue from 10 per cent to 30 per cent as
an initial strategic initiative.
The pro-chancellors said that the university system must
enjoyed full autonomy if it were to be repositioned for global competitiveness
in the 21st century
It stated that such autonomy would enable the councils of
universities to initiate steps capable of transforming the nation’s university
The pro-chancellors stressed the need for universities to
invest in their host communities to ensure harmonious relationship with these