NEW VARSITIES: AVENUE TO SIPHON MONEY FOR 2011 ELECTIONS â€“ CPC
General Mohammed Buhari's Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) has described the decision of the government to establish six more universities in each of the six geo-political zones as a surreptitious move to siphon public resources to help the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2011 general elections.
Besides, the party which asked that the projects be stopped, said President Goodluck Jonathan should be told that 'Nigerians are not idiots and that there is limit to which one can be played around.'
Faulting the decision, CPC said the planned universities would end up as white elephant projects because the existing ones were starved of funds and were therefore in comatose with their teachers complaining every time. National Publicity Secretary of the party, Dennis Aghanya in his reaction to the development, said by the decision, government was just playing to the gallery to score cheap political points.
'All the existing federal and state universities in the country are in comatose because of the lack of infrastructures and desired manpower to get them to a reasonable learning standard. It is no more history that Nigerians studying in neighbouring West African countries alone, in search of quality education, constitutes a major source of economic loss to the country,' he stated.
Recalling that the universities in the South-east had been under lock and key for months with the authorities obviously not worried, CPC said the move to establish more universities could not impress anyone because it was misplaced.
While noting that corruption had been the bane of the nation's education underdevelopment, the CPC asked the government to use the money that would be used for new institutions to resuscitate the ones in dire need of funds to function well.
It stated: 'For the past months, all the South-east state universities have been on strike. Yet, it is not a source of worry to our shameless leadership in the country. President Goodluck Jonathan should be informed that Nigerians are not idiots and that there is limit to which one can be played around. We are ready to resist his corrupt and imperialistic tendencies inherited from his master.
'Corruption has been the bane of the country's economic woes and no genuine effort seems to be in place to tackle this canker worm. The fight against corruption by the PDP government since 1999 has been a lip service. 'Funds voted for the UBE programmes are used by the governors as if they are meant for their security votes, in addition to the local governments' allocations which are at their beck and call. Our primary schools are in sorry sights, yet billions of naira is voted every quarter in the name of UBE programmes.
'Our existing universities are nothing better than glorified nursery schools. The lecturers barely access funds for necessary research work.' CPC then advised government to channel that huge sum earmarked for the white-elephant project into the existing universities saying; 'their structures can be expanded and improved on to accommodate more students seeking admission into our universities.'