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Minister blames decline in Unity colleges on principals

KANO— Minister of State for Education, Ezenwo Nyesom Wike, has said the general decline in infrastructure and academic performance of Federal unity colleges nationwide is due to the poor governance attitude of their principals.

Declaring open the annual general meeting of the principals of the 104 Federal Unity Colleges, yesterday, in Kano, Wike regretted that despite the fact that the pass percentage of WAEC and NECO results of the colleges hovered around 30 per cent, the principals have carried on as if nothing was wrong.

Wike said: “For about a decade now, the aggregate credit pass in five subjects and above among students of Federal Unity Colleges in WAEC and NECO examinations have stagnated around 30 per cent only, yet principals have carried on as if there is nothing to worry about.

“This, we can no longer allow to continue, especially in today’s climate of heightened expectations. We must do something about the quality of all principals in Unity Schools, knowing that these schools can become centres of academic excellence only when they are managed by people who are educational visionaries, knowledge experts and disciplinarians”, the minister stated.

He stated that henceforth the Federal Government would fish for principals who have the capacity to manage the academic activities of the school alongside the relationship with parents, stakeholders and community members to achieve the desired results of excellence.

Wike announced that the finances available for Federal Unity schools for the development of infrastructure would be enhanced in 2012, with the principals having the sole responsibility of executing capital projects, adding, however, that the principals would be closely monitored to ensure judicious use of the resources.

In a goodwill message, Kano State Governor, Alhaji Rabiu Kwankwaso, described as laudable, Federal Government’s renewed interest in restoring academic excellence to the colleges.

Kwankwaso advised the principals to use the resources meant for capital projects in next year’s budget.

House Committee Chairman on Education, Mr. Farouk Lawan, noted that the principals were strategic in the plan to restore standards in Federal Unity Colleges.

The Annual General Meeting attracted principals from all the 104 Federal Unity Colleges in Nigeria.



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