THE Director and Chief Executive of National Mathematical Centre, Professor Steven Ejugwu Onah, has disclosed that the Centre is unable to carry out its critical mandate of demystifying the study of mathematics at all levels of education because of poor funding.
He told the a delegation of Senate Committee on Education (Basic and Secondary) on oversight led by Professor Olusola Adeyeye, who visited the centre, on Monday, that he met the Centre with physical structures in a state of dilapidation, poor power supply, inadequate equipment, grounded vehicles, poor Internet service and poorly funded library.
He also disclosed that full discharge of the Centre’s services has been hindered by challenges like low patronage of the Centre’s services by government at all levels as “we as privatise schools.”
The Director, explained that this has consequently affected the ability of the NMC to embark on distribution of its instructional materials and mounting of train-the-trainers workshops.
He disclosed that since NMC was removed from the beneficiary institutions of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), the Centre has been unable to subscribe for Internet bandwidth and other infrastructural development at the Centre.
He, therefore, appealed to Senate to consider improving the budgetary allocation to the Centre in order to be able to carry out its mandate effectively.
Onah, however, commended the efforts of his predecessors to have within the limit of resources made available to them, developed various ingenious instructional materials, innovative training programmes and establishment of the International Model Science Academy (IMSA) among others aimed at popularising mathematical sciences.
According to him, the Centre is blessed with very patriotic workforce who have, in spite of the challenges of poor funding, continued to give their best in the efforts to simplify the study of mathematics and remove the phobia of the subject from the learners.
Senator Adeyeye, in his remark, said the delegation was around for the oversight visit to ensure that funds released to the agency is properly utilised, especially during the tough time of the economic challenge of the nation.