By Dennis Agbo
ENUGU—The Catholic Bishop of Enugu Diocese, Rev. Dr. Callistus Onaga has pleaded with owners of private universities in Nigeria not to turn the institutions into money making ventures.
In the same vein, former minister for power and Pro-Chancellor of Coal City University, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, has expressed dismay over the inability of the Private Universities to get reprieve from the Federal Government.
Bishop Onaga and Prof. Nebo, spoke yesterday during the dedication of the Coal City University, Enugu.
Bishop Onaga said citadels of learning should be the place for determining future leaders of the country, development of the human persons and the society rather than on money making.
He frowned at lecturers who are in the habit of selling handouts to students instead of helping them to learn. “We are destroying ourselves with that, we are already in trouble. Let’s cut down the
commercialization of education because money is not an end itself,” the cleric advised.
On his own account, Prof. Nebo regretted that whereas states, federal universities, polytechnics, colleges of education, among others were getting reprieve from the Federal government, private universities were not. Nebo said: “It is unfortunate that the Federal Government has a stance on private universities. That is most unfortunate but unless there is a bill from the National Assembly to correct that, it is going to be really tough.
”Both states, Federal Universities get reprieve from the Federal Government and not private universities. That is what makes the cost very high,” he stated.
According to Nebo, Coal City University had commenced moves to design a curriculum that would be above the minimum standard, adding that it was the vision of the university to groom students on entrepreneurship to make them employable and self reliant after graduation.
He assured that the university, which he said would be taking off with two faculties, would be affordable.