President Goodluck Jonathan said on Saturday that only high standard of education would guarantee a better future for Nigerian children.
He made the remark in Nsukka at the 42nd convocation and conferment of higher and honorary degrees at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.
He said the best way to derive the benefits of the country’s large population was to get the people educated, skilled and employable.
“It is for this reason that education receives the highest financial allocation in our budget in 2013,” Jonathan said.
“The present administration is determined to provide access to quality education at all levels for Nigerians”.
Represented by NUC Secretary, Prof Julius Okogie, Jonathan urged the private organisations to join hands with the Federal Government in forging partnership in funding of research and scholarship with the universities.
“We are prepared to work with all relevant stakeholders to improve education sector of our national economy.
“As a developing economy, our social progress and economic advancement will depend largely on progress we make on research and technology,”he said.
He urged the recipients of honorary doctorate degrees to see the awards as a way to strengthen their relationship with the university as well as make them to contribute more to national development.
“Let this honour done to you by the oldest university in the county spur you to greater height in your service to your fatherland, “he said.
Jonathan commended the university’s Vice-Chancellor Prof. Bartho Okolo and his management team for the massive infrastructure development going on in the university, urging other universities to emulate it.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that four eminent Nigerians were conferred with honorary degrees including Sen. Anyim Pius Anyim, Secretary to Federal Government.
He bagged the Doctor of Law; Prof Attahiru Jega,the INEC Chairman, received Doctor of Administration; Mr Fola Adeola, the Chairman of Main One Cable, Doctor of Business Administration and Mr Alex Oti, MD/CEO of Diamond Bank PLc ,went home with Doctor of Business administration.
Responding, Anyim expressed appreciation to UNN for finding them worthy of the award.
He noting that the ward would make them to do more to the university as well as to the country.
“We are excited for finding us worthy of this prestigious award, we will continue to identify with the university in its quest to become world Class University,” he said.
Earlier, Okolo said that the awardees met the stringent conditions of the University for Conferment of honorary degree, having distinguished themselves and contributed so much to national development.
“By this award, they awardees have become alumni of UNN and will share in pride privileges and responsibilities of the university.
“As special alumni of the university we hope you will hearken to our calls in times of need,” he said.
The VC announced that 198 persons would bagged doctorate degrees, 2,268 master degrees while 269 will receive post-graduate diploma.