If it eventually happens that he wins the presidency, PDP presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar says he will transfer control of federal universities to the states.
At the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) general conference’s opening ceremony on Monday in Lagos, Abubakar gave a speech.
The former vice-president claims that one of his reform ideas is to develop an atmosphere that is favorable to both foreign and domestic investors.
Abubakar maintained that since the government cannot bring about growth on its own, the reform will also address healthcare and education.
In his words:
“One of the fundamental reforms I have in my policy document is to encourage the private sector as far as the development of the country is concerned — both foreign and local. It is very essential because the federal government does not have the resources to do all the things that they want to do,” he said.
“The only way is to make sure that a conducive environment is available for the local and foreign investors to participate in the development of our country, whether it is infrastructure, education and healthcare.
“I had an argument with a university professor from Federal University, Lokoja. He said he read in my policy document that I intend to devolve, in other words, to return education to the states. How dare I do that?
‘Mr professor, do you realise that the first set of our universities belongs to the regional governments?’ He said, ‘yes’. I said ‘who are the successors of the regional government?’ He said: ‘the states’.
“I said the children you send to America or England, who own those universities? Mostly the private sector. So, why is it that you think we cannot do it here? We don’t have the money.”
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