The Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Prof. Peter Okebukola said the recent signing of NOUN Amendment Act, 2018 will place the institution at par with all recognised universities in Nigeria.
Speaking at a news conference in Lagos on Thursday, Okebukola said that with the act recently gazetted and published on Dec. 3, 2018, the university will be strengthened to provide Open and Distance Learning (ODL) opportunities to millions of Nigerians.
“We want to extend our gratitude therefore to the Federal Government of Nigeria, under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari for signing the NOUN amendment Act.
“This has recently been gazetted and published on the 3rd of Dec. 2018 as National Open University (Amendment) Act 2018.
“With this recognition, the university is now placed at par with all recognised universities in Nigeria under the various Acts that amended the provision of higher education in Nigerian universities.
“What this means for the students also is that they now have a vista of opportunities that they did not have before.
“For instance, for those who are reading Law, it will enable them access after graduation to take on their training in the Law School as negotiations between the university and the Council for Legal Education on this, has almost reached a breakthrough.
“It also will allow those who are eligible to be mobilised for NYSC to go for NYSC but to me, what it means is that it elevates the NOUN to the same level with other universities, in terms of status and provisions as the others.
“So, we can operate as they operate, we have the same general guidelines for our operations and so no one will say NOUN is substandard to the others,” he said.
Okebukola said the council had also approved March 22 and March 23, for the university’s 2019 convocation ceremony, where approximately 18,000 students will be graduating.
He added that a total of 17,000 students would be officially admitted into the university for the 2018/2019 academic session during its matriculation ceremony scheduled for March 3, in all the study centres across the country.
Okebukola, who lauded the TETFund for intervening in capital development and in staff capacity building, urged continuous funding for NOUN, being a specialised university that enrols the largest number of students in Nigeria.