Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, Tuesday faulted the proliferation of higher institutions of learning in Nigeria, saying government should look for ways to address some of the problems facing the education sector.
Soyinka said this against the backdrop of the recent merger of Tai Solarin University of Education (TASUED) with the Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU) and the administrative consolidation of the four Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Polytechnics into one by the Ogun State Government.
Soyinka who spoke in Abeokuta, at the second day of the Ogun State Investors’ Forum, with the theme: “Ogun State: Open for Business”, condemned the move, saying: “The mindless proliferation of institutions was uncalled for.”
He said schools should not be established without the wherewithal to nurture them and urged governments to invest in “quality not quantity.”
He deplored also the centrist nature of the nation’s polity and called for a return to the epoch of healthy competitions of the 60s, which existed amongst states/regions that constituted the then Nigeria.
While commending the initiatives of the Ogun State government for organising the event, he cautioned that no state could maximise its potentials without the country returning to genuine federalism.
In his remark, the deputy governor, said the government and entire good people of the state welcomed everyone present to the second day of the state Investors’ Forum, saying “today’s programme would give us an added opportunity of cross-fertilisation of ideas and I believe we would come up with viable recommendations that would ensure that your businesses would grow while the economy of our dear state, in particular, and Nigeria, in general, would continue to be buoyant.”
He added: “This Investors’ Forum is aimed at ensuring economic growth and development of our dear state. We want the outcome to touch every sector of the state’s economy. As an administration, let me assure you all that every suggestion and recommendation made, at the end of this programme would be thoroughly considered, for effective utilisation and implementation, in conjunction with the Five-Cardinal programme which is pivot of the Senator Ibikunle Amosun led-administration’s ‘Mission to Rebuild Ogun State’.”