The 124th position ranking of Nigeria among 182 countries in the Human Development Index is a source of worry to the National Universities Commission (NUC), just has the Commission has called for concerted effort to develop the country.
Executive Secretary of the Commission, Prof. Julius Okojie, made the revelation on Monday at the University of Benin, where he delivered a public lecture entitled: “Embracing Nigeria Universities Reforms to Enhance Innovation Research and Entrepreneurship.”
According to Prof Okojie, Niger Republic ranks 182th position in the Human Development Index, while Netherlands, which occupies the 1st position, is closely followed by Singapore.
Okojie, suggested a collaborative research and adequate funding for universities education that would encourage innovation and vocational skills development.
He argued that the rising level of unemployment in the country has the potential of putting the calls for researches that are applicable to human and economic development in view of the rising level of unemployment in the country.
“But, even when you do all those things and if there is no where to work, the problem is half-solved…There is so much space in the system and if you want to do what other people are doing, you won’t make it. come with a new idea.
“At the international level, we are very lowly ranked on economic and human development. So, research innovation and Entrepreneurship development are very important”, he said.
Okojie revealed that the governance structure of most states governments-owned Universities was worse-off in terms of compromise of academic standards and flouting of the Public Procurement Laws.
He said, “The governance structure in states universities is the worst you can find. The governor will sit somewhere, with disregard to procurement order.
If there is a way we can review the constitution, I would suggest that the Education should be removed from the exclusive list to the concurrent list because from the concurrent list, you are not depriving them of anything, yet, you are talking of the same standard. So, we will do our very best”.
The Vice Chancellor, University of Benin, Prof. Faraday Orumwense, paid tribute to the intellectual depth of the the guest lecturer, Prof. Julius Okojie, who is professor of Forestry and Resource Management and Fellow of Nigeria Academy of science.