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Access Bank chairman urges financial institutions to assist government in funding education

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Dr. Ajoritsedere Awosika, the Chairman of Access Bank Plc., has called on other financial institutions and well-meaning Nigerians to assist government at all levels in funding the education sector.

Awosika stated this on Wednesday while delivering a lecture at the 4th convocation ceremony of Chrisland University, Abeokuta.

The Access Bank chairman explained that the measure would ease the burden on government.

It was reported that Awosika’s lecture was titled: “The Visible and Invisible Hands of Development: Interrogating the Roles of Tertiary Institutions and Financial Sector in Nigeria”.

She specifically asked financial institutions to provide more student-oriented credit systems and support for tertiary education in Nigeria.

She lamented that millions of young Nigerians are out of school because of the inability of their parents to fund their education.

According to her, tertiary education remains out of reach for the poorest and most marginalised. She advocated for strategic and effective investments in tertiary education.

“Tertiary education is instrumental in fostering growth, reducing poverty and boosting shared prosperity. It benefits not just the individual, but the entire educational system.

“Tertiary, technical and vocational education and training can provide an effective and efficient complement to traditional university studies. It provides students with skills and knowledge relevant to the labour market.

“Larger numbers of students increase the strain on publicly-funded institutions of higher learning and many countries with limited resources are struggling to finance the growing needs of a larger student body, without compromising the quality of their educational offerings.

“Both policies and academic degrees need to be strategically tailored to fit the needs of the local society and economy.

“Only then can governments realise the gains in primary and secondary attainment through tertiary education access and progression and turn these successes into increased and sustained economic and social development,” she said.

Awosika noted that the benefits of tertiary education included higher employment levels, higher wages, greater social stability, increased civic engagement and better health outcomes.

In her remarks, the Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof. Chinedum Babalola, disclosed that nine students out of the total population of 52 graduands had First Class, 27 graduated with Second Class Upper Division and 14 bagged Second Class Lower Division degrees.

Babalola admonished the graduates to make use of the entrepreneurial skills the university had equipped them with in creating wealth and being self-sufficient.

“My dear graduands, be determined not to follow people who will distract you from achieving your goals. Choose your friends wisely.

“One advice I will give to you is do not have one source of income. Do not be fraudulent, avoid internet crime and immorality,” she said.

It was reported that the university awarded honorary degrees to the Alake and Paramount Ruler of Egbaland, Oba (Dr) Adedotun Gbadebo, and the Vice Chairman of Famfa Oil Ltd., Mrs. Folorunso Alakija.

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Abiodun Lawal

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