The Delta State government on Friday described as false the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) allegation on the proliferation of universities in the state.
The state’s Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, stated this during the inauguration of chairmen and members of the Governing Councils of the three new universities at the Government House in Asaba.
The three Universities are the University of Delta, Agbor; Dennis Osadebey University, Asaba; and the Delta State University of Science and Technology, Ozoro.
Okowa stressed that the universities were established to increase access to educational facilities for the teeming number of students from the state.
He said: “Let me respectfully disagree with the position of ASUU that there is an unhealthy proliferation of state universities in the country.
“The establishment of universities is on the concurrent list and, as a state, we do so when the need arises.
“In our case, it is to fill the gap created by shortage of space and to increase access to university education for our qualified youths.”
The governor, who relied on statistics from the Joint Admission Matriculation Board (JAMB) 2018 report, noted 80,131 or 4.85 percent of the total number of Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) candidates for that year were from the state.
Okowa added: “Also, for the 2019/2020 academic session, 25,896 candidates from the state chose Delta State University (DELSU) as first choice. Out of this number, 22,358 qualified but only 4,854 candidates could be admitted.
“From the foregoing, you can see that even the state-owned DELSU has reached its full carrying capacity, hence, it is incumbent on us as an administration to broaden access to university education for our bright students especially in the fields of medicine, engineering, law, ICT, and architecture.”
This post was written by Obiajulu Joel Nwolu.
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