Nigerians question 25-year quotas policy for university admissions
Scholars, among other Nigerians, have called for an urgent revision or abolition of the national quota policy for university admissions to promote equality and national development.
In an effort to ensure a uniform development of the country’s education sector, 25 years ago the federal government formulated a policy of granting preferential treatment to applicants entering universities across the country from states that were considered disadvantaged at the time. educational point of view.
While still justifying politics in the context of modern Nigeria, the head of the information department of the Joint Admission and Admission Board (JAMB), Dr. Fabian Benjamin, said that the policy was designed to unite the nation by giving everyone, from all the state of the country, the opportunity to get an education and have a sense of affiliation, “because every Nigerian is a stakeholder in politics.”
But the former vice-chancellors, Femi Mimiko, Ayodeji Olukoyu, Professor Adebayo Adeyemi; Collins Okeke, Head of the Foundation for the Department of Education of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Professor Ngozi Osarenren and Head of Legal Services and Program Manager for the Legal Services for Human Rights (HURILAW) Collins Okeke noted that politics has been surpassed by events for 25 years. They argued that the college admission quota system had been misapplied and should therefore be abandoned.
Benjamin said policies that favor low-education countries must continue because the gap she intended to close has not yet been fully closed.
He explained that giving preference to candidates from these states goes beyond simply accepting students.
He said this policy was introduced in the 1970s after the Nigerian civil war. “Mutual suspicion arose between ethnic groups and the government was looking for a platform to bring people together. JAMB has become one such platform that can lead different ethnic groups to form a nation. The policy was designed to meet this interest. “
Guided by politics, Bayelsa, Ebony, Jigawa, Zamfara, Adamawa, Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Cross River, Gombe, Jigawa, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba and Yobe were classified as low-educated states; while the states of Ogun, Lagos, Osun, Ondo, Ekiti, Abia, Anambra, Enugu, Delta, Imo, Akwa Ibom and Edo were grouped as highly educated states.
BUT, stakeholders wondered why, 25 years after the policy was adopted and implemented, states such as Cross River, Rivers and Kano, with various institutions of higher education, would still be classified as less educationally disadvantaged.
In politics, credit is given 45 percent. This applies to all candidates in the country; gives automatic access after reaching the clipping mark. The second is the pelvis, which is 35 percent; and the third factor is the least favorable states from the educational point of view, accounting for 20%.
Stakeholders are also demanding an end to the policies they advocate by denying applicants who deserve admission the opportunity to gain access to the higher education institution of their choice.
Okeke, the head of Huriwa, said the policy had outlived its usefulness, calling it discriminatory, encouraging mediocrity and discouraging excellence.
“Instead of a quota system, there should be incentives for states that do well in education to reward them and encourage others to do better, while teachers can be recruited from the south and paid more to complement their northern counterparts and transfer knowledge effectively. The quota system creates a mediocre education system, ”he said.
Mimiko, former deputy rector of Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba (AAUA), said that while there is nothing wrong with politics, it should be implemented in a way that does not undermine its dignity.
Mimiko, professor of political science at Obafemi Awolovo University (OAU), Ife complained that the quota system was introduced in a way that challenges the country’s goal of state-building.
He said: “The quota system should be a buffer measure; use it to raise the plight of the disadvantaged and then stop them and start treating everyone by the same standards. ”
He added that space for the quota system should make up a “very small” percentage of available spaces and that on the list of those to be allocated space through the quota system, spaces should still perform best in such groups. He also suggested introducing a quota system in such a way that there was not the slightest hint that it should reward the “lazy”.
To address the imbalance, Mimiko urged governments in areas deemed to be educationally disadvantaged to invest in the sector.
Professor Adeyemi, former vice rector of Bells University of Technology, Ota, complains about the misapplication of the quota system. To solve this problem, he advocated for the national border for prospective students.
“I can remember my service as (official) chairman of the selection committee of the OAU Faculty of Technology from 1986 to 1991; admission was carried out on the basis of a quota system. At the time, I think it was based on the following parameters; merit (40%), coverage (30%), educational disadvantaged states (20%) and discretion (10%).
“The minimum score at that time was 200 points for admission to Nigerian universities. We never fell below the minimum required score, regardless of the candidate group. “
Describing the intention of the quota system as noble, Olukoju complained that beneficiaries accepted what should normally be a privilege as a right.
He said the quota system was out of use and should be abolished.
The system gives undue benefits to some people by promoting complacency and mediocrity on the part of the beneficiaries, he said.
Olukoju, an associate in the Faculty of History and Strategic Studies at the University of Lagos, said the policy was conceived as a buffer, but the beneficiaries, who also run the federal government, have kept it in their best interests, even if they do. education has improved over time.
“It’s time to ask the governors of the so-called disadvantaged states to report on the allocation of budget funds for the education sector in their states. Beneficiaries abused affirmation by wearing it as a badge of honor. Every policy has a lifetime and is outdated. This was supposed to encourage backward states to rebel with their help, but it unfairly rewards and reinforces mediocrity and an authoritarian mentality.
According to Ossarenren, if students, regardless of their status, received solid knowledge; they will compete effectively with each other.
The scientist noted that the adoption policy only sowed the seeds of discord between parents and children from different regions.
“Every child needs to be treated well. If you accept a child with a lower score, how will he compete on an equal footing with others? Differences in admission systems have shown that government is limited to providing quality education orally.
In addition, Former President of the Academic Staff Universities Union (ASUU), Head of the University of Ilorin, Dr. Usman Rahim says the quota system is outdated.
Raheem, chatting with The Guardian in Ilorin, argued that the admission quota system should be abandoned and its dignity restored.
The former head of the ASU, who teaches at the Department of Geography and Environmental Management, added that the system was unable to solve the problem of the imbalance of social strata in the country.
He compared this system to a situation where the older brother most suitable for the position was asked to resign in place of the brother who was least suited for the position.
“However, many qualified candidates are discarded every day in favor of middle ones under the pretext of user areas and states with low education. However, if there are facilities in a certain area, such as, for example, a college, I think it will not be superfluous to give people there a “slight preference” over others, ”he added.
HOWEVER, prof. Tanko Adamu and Bardé Ibrahim of the University of Bayero in Kano (BUK) argued that the quota policy should be maintained because the main goal was not fully achieved.
Adamu, professor of geography, argued that there is still a large gap between north and south in the education system, which still takes time to bridge.
He complained that successive governments in the region did not prioritize education.
To fill this gap, he says, attention needs to be paid to basic education and regrets that public primary education in the North has been ignored for many years.
“If you want to fill any gaps, the main job is actually at the basic education level, and we all know that the public primary education system has been ignored for many years. Successive governments have overlooked this area, which is in fact the key to bridging the divide between the two regions.
“We’re not doing as well as we should be in the north, so there’s no way we can get to the south,” he said.
He called on regional leaders to ensure that teachers in the area are properly trained.
“We don’t value education so that we can sit down and plan right, and I think that’s the problem,” Adamu said.
For Barde, professor of accounting, the quota system is still in place. He compared this to 13% of oil production in oil-producing states.
He also argued that the quota policy is still valid because the North is still lagging behind the South, and called for more schools in the region.
Source: – Guardian