By Funmilayo Adeyemi
The National Universities Commission (NUC) has upgraded the Niger State College of Education (COE) to the Niger State University of Education.
The Acting Executive Secretary of NUC, Chris Maiyaki disclosed this in Abuja on Thursday.
He said the upgrading would make it the 63rd state-owned university and 270th university in the Nigerian university system.
Maiyaki noted that universities would continue to play a pivotal roles in national development while also congratulating the Governor of Niger, Mohammed Bago for his vision and creative leadership role in the life of the people of the state.
“We are not reinventing the wheel for this university because the law has been passed in 2013 but has not been put to conclusion because successive administrations did not follow it up.
“And it is on assumption of office that his Excellency, Mohammed Bago with his formidable team went through the record and rekindled the matter in August.
“It would be recalled that Niger State university of Education was recognised as a duly established university in the Nigerian University System by the NUC by its letter with reference NUC/ES31, Volume 69 and dated May 8, 2015.
He said the commission received a letter from the Niger Government dated Aug. 20, as well as strategic document including the relevant gazetted university laws, academic brief and physical master plan for the recognition of the university.
“I proudly wrote on behalf of the National Universities Commission (NUC) to inform his Excellency that with effect from Thursday, Sept. 28, the recognition of Niger State University of Education has been revalidated as the 63rd state- owned university and 270th university in the Nigerian university system.
“The NUC hereby pledges its full support to the university.
“We also enjoin the governor and the Niger government to take full advantage of the professional and technical advice that the commission statutorily requires to provide on the establishment, sustainable funding and operational roles of the university,” he said.
He, therefore, said that the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) , TETFund and NYSC would be duly notified of the establishment of the university.
Meanwhile, the Gov. Mohammed Bago, said that the state experienced deficit in education and learning, adding that it is therefore important to have an additional university to address the learning gaps.
Bago also said that the state would provide a vocational hub where Nigerians could come and learn skills.
” In 2013, our predecessor was here with a mission to convert the Niger State College of Education to a university of education, but somewhere along the line, it became a mirage.
“We have come to rekindle this ambition. Secondly, the IBB University, Lapai is desirous of a Medical Department, so we want you to expedite approval so that we have full curriculum for Medicine and Surgery.
” We are also proposing that the Federal College of Education, Kotangora and the Federal Polytechnics Bida, will be degree-awarding institutions,” he said. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)