By Emmanuel Ayungbe
UYO—EMINENT scholars drawn from universities within and outside the country have attributed the rising unemployment in Nigeria to the faulty educational system in Nigerian universities.
The scholars maintained that the current curriculum used in Nigerian universities are defective and cannot produce graduates who are public service oriented and cannot be engaged conveniently in the labour market.
They made these assertions at this year’s 2017 Round Table Economic Conference organised by the Faculty of Business Administration of the University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
“Graduates of Nigerian universities are not equipped intellectually to impact positively on the present day economy. They are not trained to engage usefully in the Nigerian economy. Their mindset has to change.
“We continue to teach students the same thing, year in year out, expecting a different result, that is not possible. The academic system does not put into consideration the dynamic nature of the economy.
“We have to change the educational system so that the students who graduate from the university can easily fit into the economic system of the country,” the conference noted.
They urged authorities of Nigerian universities to adopt academic programmes that will make graduates to be functional and employable in the economy.
“Right now, we have graduates who are only consumers,” they said.
While acknowledging the fact that the country has a public service dominated economy, they called for re-orientation as the thousands of students who pass out from the universities annually cannot depend solely on government jobs.
“The government alone cannot create all the jobs that we need in this country,” they noted.
As managers of university educational system, we have to be futuristic in thinking and draw up programmes that wll make our graduates marketable in the current economic situation in the country.”
Dean, Faculty of Business Administration, University of Uyo, Professor Leo Ukpong, had in his opening remarks, outlined topic to be discussed to include, Monetary and Fiscal Policy, Exchange rates policy, Unemployment and the political Economy of Niger Delta region.
Ukpong assured that the conference which has now become an annual event was aimed at reviewing the socio-cultural and economic situation in the country with a view to proffering solution to the government.
The Programme Officer, Dr. Paul Nwulu, who represented, Fond Foundation, sponsors of the conference, said research conducted by his organisation indicated that unemployment was the major cause of insurgency in Nigeria.
“We have graduate accountant, engineers and all that who graduated over five years ago without jobs. The state government spend over 90 percent of its allocation on salaries and services of loans, so no capital projects no job creation.
“Before 1960, agriculture was the primary source of revenue used in the development of small scale industries that was generating revenue to the nation. When oil was discovered, agriculture was forgotten and our attention focused on oil for development purposes that was Nigeria greatest mistake. We are paying the price now.”
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