By Gabriel Chy Alonta
The former senate president of Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Ken Nnamani, has tasked university administrators to immediately review the curriculum of university education to provide answers to the strategic national needs at different historic moments.
Nnamani observed that university should continue to contribute immensely towards national integration and development, while remarking that the education should focus on human capital development, which, according to him, is fundamental to economic development.
The former senate president made this call when he delivered the 13th convocation lecture of Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra state, Wednesday.
According to him, we need a review of university curriculum to refocus on the threatening failure of the states in Africa and the need to recreate beliefs and moral sentiments in young Africans, who will lead the vanguard of resurgence of nationalism and patriotism.
“It was no accident that our founding fathers focused so much attention on boosting our country’s human capital.
“The collapse of quality higher education in Nigeria is one of the causes of national leadership deficit which ultimately contributes to the stunted national development.
“Our nation needs transformative leaders in order to transform its problematic institutions”, he posited.
He said that the central importance of education in national development lies in its ability to create the values of civility, excellence and professionalism that defines a democratic society.
Nnamani further tasks universities as one of the core institution to help develop the critical human resources and research insights that would lead to our actual technological takeoff and sustainable economic development.
“The universities have a responsibility to engage with the articulation of patriotic beliefs and sentiments that will promote commitment to national unity and development in the next generation of Nigerian leaders and scholars”.
He said universities should focus on engendering the appropriate culture for national development as well as focus on modeling those values in their academic research and scholarship.
“University education is not just about technological inventions. It is also about shaping the human mind, transforming the human spirit and enriching the human imagination.
“It is the responsibility of our universities with the support of the government and non-profit organisations to produce great Nigerians, who will venture forward and build the Nigeria of our dream,” he remarked.
He further recommended that Nigeria universities should cease from being glorified ivory tower sitting in isolation of the crisis of nationhood, stressing that it should be the catalysts of solutions to the social and economic challenges of nationhood.