Federal Government yesterday issued provisional licences two new private universities – Edwin Clark University, Kiagbodo, Delta State, and Hezekiah University, Umudi, Imo State.
The ceremony, which held at the National Universities Commission, NUC, was performed by the Minister of Education, Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau, assisted by the executive secretary of the NUC, Prof Julius Okojie.
In his address, Mallam Shekarau reiterated the commitment of the federal government to ensuring that more private universities would be encouraged to come on board, provided they meet the requirements
This, according to him, is to improve access to tertiary education in the country.
He said a total of 61 private universities in Nigeria, in addition to public ones, were not enough to meet the educational needs of 160 million population.
The minister commended the proprietors of the newly licenced universities for successfully completing the rigorous resource evaluation exercise that preceded their acceptance into the community of private universities in Nigeria.
The minister, however, cautioned the proprietors against charging unreasonably high tuition fees, adding that although federal government does not fund private schools, their fees must be within reasonable limit.
In his remarks, Prof Okojie reminded the owners of the new universities that the licenses were temporal, adding that after three years the commission would come back to carry out the stage of resource evaluation and that licences could be withdrawn if the commission was not satisfied with what the universities had on ground.

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