By MONSUR OLOWOOPEJO
LAGOS— Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State yesterday disclosed that the state government had spent about N12 billion, to revive the dilapidated infrastructure in the Lagos State University, LASU.
Fashola also said that the state government has budgeted the sum of N1.2 billion on bursaries and scholarships for 2013 academic year, saying “the government was committed to widening access to education in the state.”
The governor who disclosed this at the inauguration ceremony of the new 12-member who constituted the institution Governing Council at the Lagos House, Alausa, explained that the funds represent the two-year expenditure of the government in transforming the university into a world-class citadel of learning.
Some of the infrastructure projects embarked upon by the government include a seven-storey Senate Building, four storey central library; a twin Faculty of Law lecture theatere, new School of Transport Complex; Faculty of Management Sciences Complex, Faculty of Sciences Complex, Students’ Union Arcade, refurbishment of 3-in-1 building and others.
He emphasised that the state government had taken a number of steps lately to transform the institution, saying “part of it was the upward review of tuition fee at the university in 2011.”
Fashola explained that the step was taken by the state government to salvage the institution from falling standards and infrastructure decay.
He said the government could no longer sacrifice quality tertiary education for cheap tuition, adding the decision was in the best interest of LASU and the students.
The governor promised that his administration would not relent in its effort to ensure that the university competes favourably with its peers in delivering sound education.
While inaugurating the new members led by Mr.. Bode Agosto, a foremost economist, Fashola charged the new council to help actualise this dream by coming up with novel ideas that could further turn the institution around and make it realise its full potential.
Vanguard gathered that the 12 member council was the ninth since the inception of the institution in 1980.
He expressed the hope that the new council would consolidate on the achievements of the out-going council and move the institutions to enviable heights.
On the bursary, Fashola, however, said the government had so far supported indigent students in their educational careers with the disbursement of about N850 million.
Speaking on behalf of other council members, Agosto suggested that there was the need to improve the quality of instruction at the university, urging the state government to invest more in ICT.