The National Universities Commission (NUC) is currently considering applications submitted by 292 private Universities with a view to a giving them approval to operate as recognized institutions.
This consideration is part of efforts to address the growing youth population of admission seekers in Nigeria.
The executive secretary of NUC, Abdul Rasheed Abubakar said that the commission was processing 292 applications from institutions that hope to become private universities.
”While many of those seeking accreditation are fairly small and specialist institutions, such as private medical schools and creative arts colleges, the new institutions will be vital in Nigeria’s plans to expand student numbers by 20 percent over the next five years” Abubakar said.
Speaking at the annual conference of the UK’s Quality Assurance Agency, NUC boss said there is a dire shortage of university in Nigeria.
”Only 19 percent of the 2 million students who applied to university were accepted last year, with about 30 percent either going abroad or pursuing vocational studies.
This is a very serious situation – 1 million students do not get access to university not because they have failed their exams, but because the capacity [to admit them] is not there,”
“It is a dangerous thing to have this problem of frustrated youths who are left out on the streets,” he said.
Presently, there are 163 universities in Nigeria and if the 292 private universities are approved, Nigeria would have a total of 455 universities for a population of almost 200 million.