By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo on Tuesday declared that lecturers and university administrators and not government should be blamed for the present state of education in Africa especially Nigeria
The Vice President said this in Ibadan at the opening ceremony of the 13th Regional Conference of Higher Education Research and Policy Network (HERPNET) organised in collaboration with the Nigerian Institute of Social And Economic Research (NISER), Ibadan with the theme “managing corruption in African higher education systems”.
Professor Osinbajo who was represented by a member of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Professor Sadiq Radda, lamented that in most situations,people blame the government, the parents and even the students for the decay in the system but often ignore the contributions of lecturers, staffs and administrators of the institutions as important stakeholders in the educational sector.
“Many times, we pass the buck. We blame government for underfunding higher institutions and the students for not being diligent enough. We blame parents for the rot in our higher institutions while we ignore the fact that as lecturers and administrators, we contribute to the state of education in our countries.”, he said.
Commenting on the theme of the conference “Managing corruption in African higher education systems” the Vice President said corruption starts with basic things such as not doing the right thing at the right time to condoning unethical and criminal behaviour within the institutions.
Professor Osinbajo added “perhaps the discussion here today may start with everyone accepting the fact that the responsibility of killing corruption from our institutions rest on us” saying, “corruption starts with basic things such as not doing the right thing at the right time to condoning unethical and criminal behaviour within our institutions. Worst still, when we allow such to become the order of the day”
“If we must address the issue of corruption and find an enduring solution to it, we ought to pay particular attention to basic things such as the admission process, our commitment to students wellbeing; how we adhere to lecture timetable, examine scripts marked and when results are released, when students get their certificate after graduation, the employment process, promotion, training opportunities for academic and non-academic staff,”
Speaking, the HERPNET President, Professor Olukolade Odekunle noted that the group “is so sensitive to government laudable policies and programmes gear towards sustainable development and the thinking is how corruption can be effectively managed through the instrumentality of higher education.”
The HERPNET President stressed
that the topic of the conference ” is coming at a very crucial period when African countries including Nigeria are focusing their attention on the best strategies to eradicate corruption in all sectors of the economy including education”.
Declaring the conference open, the
NISER Director-General,Dr Folarin Gbadebo-Smith disclosed that it was put in place to facilitate development of research and educational sector of the country and the continent at large saying, participants at the conference should come up with workable solution that would help address the issue of corruption in tertiary institutions and make it grow as a fast as they could when compared with their peers in across the globe.
The NISER DG who expressed doubt on if there is any institution in the country and continent that is free from the menace of corruption, advised participants at the conference to come up with workable solution that would help address the issue of corruption in the tertiary institutions and make them grow as a fast as they could when compared with their peers in across the globe.