BY PHILIP EKE, YENAGOA
The National University Commission (NUC) has approved the University
of Africa as the 43rd state university in the country.
Its approval followed the formal presentation of the relevant gazette
law, academic brief and physical masterplan as well as the
satisfactory report of the advisory resource assessment visit by the
The University of Africa is an initiative of the Bayelsa State
Government, which will, however, run as a Public Private Partnership
(PPP), since the state government will only provide the enabling
environment, while the financing would come from the private sector.
Giving the nod, through a letter dated 28 of July 2016, the Executive
Secretary of the commission, Professor Julius Okojie, while
congratulating the state government, noted that, the establishment of
the university took effect from the 28th of July, having complied with
the basic requirements.
According to Okojie, the University of Africa is also the 143rd in the
Nigerian university system.
In a statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the Bayelsa State
Governor, Daniel Iworiso-Markson, yesterday and made available to the
press, Governor Seriake Dickson had led a delegation of top government
officials to the office of the commission in Abuja and were received
by executive secretary, who briefed the governor on the latest
development and the approval of the university.
The statement disclosed that, Okojie handed over the letter of
approval to Dickson during the visit, as he also commended him for the
In his remarks, Dickson, while thanking the NUC Executive Secretary
for the warm reception accorded him and his team, explained that, the
University of Africa, Toru-Orua was conceived as a public private
partnership and it is designed as a first rate institution of learning
that will also attract some of the best teachers from Africa and the
He said the university will be funded by its partners and the
government would only provide the enabling environment for its
The Bayelsa State Chief Executive said, there is need for more private
universities to be established and they must be fee paying, pointing
out that, it is the only way to make funding of tertiary institutions
viable and sustainable.
His words “I am here leading this small delegation to present to you
these laws passed by the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, establishing
a new university that we want to bring about working with the private
sector. It will be run on a PPP basis.
It is a University unlike the existing one; it will not be directly
funded by the state. Our belief is that moving forward for a
university to be sustainable; we must create room for private sector
participation and involvement.
The University of Africa, Toru-Orua, is the first of its kind in this
country, that is established by government with private sector
involvement and it will be strictly a fee paying tertiary institution
that will attract students from across the continent and the globe. It
will be the model as we encourage more private universities in this