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News, Politics

Admission Constraints: FG To Establish Mega Varsities

The Federal Government is planning to establish mega universities to address admission constraints among Nigerians, President Goodluck Jonathan said on Saturday in Zaria, Kaduna State.

The President said this at a special convocation and launching of N50 billion Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Phase II Development Fund at the university’s main campus, Samaru, Zaria.

Jonathan was represented by Vice President Namadi Sambo.

He said that when established, each of the mega universities would absorb more than 200,000 students.

Jonathan, however, did not mention how many mega universities the government will establish or when and where they will be sited.

 The president expressed concern at the growing number of Nigerian university admission seekers yearly in the last three years which, he said, was about 1.5 million.

He noted that the absorption capacity of the universities was about a quarter of that number.

He commended the ABU for its contributions to education and national development, saying that the university had not disappointed its founding fathers.

Jonathan said that university education development was capital intensive and required the contributions of parents, well- meaning Nigerians and all other stakeholders.

The Chairman of the project and former Military President, retired Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, attributed the nation’s security and development challenges to declining fortune in education.

  “The security, peace and progress we aspire for ourselves and our families are not attainable, if the majority of the citizenry remains trapped in ignorance and poverty.

“Ignorance and poverty are two sides of the same coin, in the same way that knowledge and progress are to another coin,’’ he said.

Gov. Ramalan Yero of Kaduna State remarked that ABU graduates had distinguished themselves in all aspects of human endeavour.

Yero pledged to support the institution, saying that education was a topmost priority of his administration.

A former Chief of Army Staff, retired Lt. Gen. Theophilus Danjuma, who was conferred with an honorary doctorate degree in science at the occasion, thanked the university for the honour it gave him.

Danjuma, also a former Minister of Defence, because of whom the special convocation was held, promised to assist the university to actualise the dreams of its founding fathers. (NAN)

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Nasarawa State Govt. Sale 2,000 Laptops To Civil Servants

The Nasarawa State Government is to purchase 2,000 computer laptops for distribution to its civil servants, Mr Andrew Affi, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Science and Technology, has said.

Affi however told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Saurday in Lafia that the laptops would not be given out free of charge.

“Any civil servant who is interested will be given one for N135,000 and will be expected to pay up the money within 18 months,’’ he said.

The permanent secretary said that some forms had already been made available those who are interested.

“Civil servants from the state, as well as those from federal agencies and ministries, who are interested to obtain their forms should contact the necessary organs,’’ he said.

Affi said the move to purchase laptops was part of government’s commitment to encourage civil servants in the state.

He also said that the laptops would enhance the operations of the civil service.

“The world is becoming a global village. We cannot afford to be left behind. You cannot do anything without the computer these days,” the permanent secretary said.(NAN)

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NSCDC Arrest 2 Suspected Vandals With 68 Jerry Cans Of Petrol

The Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) on Saturday in Lagos said it had arrested two suspected vandals with 68 jerry cans of petrol, worth N160,000.

The Lagos State corps’ Commander, Mr Shem Obafaiye, who disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), said that his men recovered about 2,000 Jerry cans each loaded with 25 litres of petrol.

Obafaiye said that the duo were arrested at Owode border in Badagry Local Government Area of Lagos State around midnight where they syphoned the product from a truck at the `Miracle Oil filling” station at Pashi Asiri.

He said that the suspects were about 10 in number but only two of them were arrested.

He said that one of the suspects, confessed that he was a motor mechanic and he usually engaged in illegal bunkering in the night.

The commandant said that the second suspect also confessed that he sold diesel and kerosine to unsuspecting companies and government offices in Ekiti.

“Illegal business has become a daily affair and the command is helpless because we are lacking operational vehicles and equipment to meet up with the challenges,” he said.

He, however, assured members of the public that the command would continue to do its best to get rid of “criminals” who were out to sabotage the Nigerian economy.(NAN)

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