A proposed law by the House of Representatives to establish a Federal University of Technology in Asaba, Delta State, got the support of the National Universities Commission, Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities and other stakeholders last Thursday.
The bill entitled ‘A Bill for an Act to Establish a Federal University of Technology, Asaba, Delta State’ is sponsored by the minority leader in the House, Ndudi Elumelu.
Representatives of NUC and SSANU gave their support to the bill at a public hearing held by the Hon. Aminu Suleiman-led Committee on Tertiary Education at the National Assembly on the establishment of the university in Asaba as well as a Federal College of Education at Keana in Nasarawa State.
The executive secretary of the NUC, Prof Abubakar Rasheed, who was represented by Alhaji Ibrahim Yakassai, commended the move by the House to establish the institution in Delta.
While making his presentation on the bill at the public hearing, the NUC boss said the commission would always support the establishment of more tertiary institutions considering that the annual intake of students across the nation is minimal.
He said considering the importance of education in national development, it is imperative to support the establishment of more institutions to allow more students to enroll in tertiary institutions.
The SSANU also expressed its support for the establishment of the institution, but noted that there is a need to upgrade existing tertiary institutions.
The association, represented by Mohammed Aliyu, said funding is important for not only the continued existence of the tertiary institutions but also for putting the needed infrastructure in place for the impartation of quality education across the country.
The National Commission for Colleges of Education, represented by Mr. Achumie Jonathan, supported the bill but also noted, like most other stakeholders, that funding had always been an issue.
Delta State governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, backed the proposed establishment of the university in Asaba.
Represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Chinedu Ebie, the governor said, however, that “funding will have to stepped up for these educational institutions. We need these schools; we need education. No nation can develop past the level of education of its people.”
The minority leader and sponsor of the bill, Hon. Ndudi Elumelu, said there was a need to urgently conclude work on the passage of the bill.
He also listed factors he believed would aid the speedy commencement of the university.
“We have the best international airport in Nigeria and this will to a large extent ensure that all students that will be coming in even outside the South-South states will have easy way of reaching out to the school without problems.
“All the roads to the school are tarred. The residential apartment for the school is available. The classrooms for the school are available; even the hostels are there. So, the Federal Government will have less to spend for the takeoff,” he noted.
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