The involvement of emirates and royalty in the educational development efforts in Niger state was introduced by the administration of Engineer Abdulkadiri Kure, who was the Governor of the state from 1999 to 2007.
The policy as it was conceived then, was to encourage the traditional councils in the state to form educational development forum, with government releasing to the emirate education committees’ take -off grants. Subsequently the prominent indigenes of the area were mobilised and encouraged to support the development of education.
Since the educational committees were set up they have been veritable tools for traditional councils in the state to mobilise their subjects and council members alike to contribute to the educational advancement of their various domain.
The focus of the emirate committees have always been in the area of primary and secondary education. None of the emirate councils had veered into tertiary education. But determined to mobilise all Nupe men and women for the educational advancement of the land, the Estu Nupe, Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar, on Thursday, June 6, 2012, inaugurated a board of trustees (BOT) for the establishment of Edusoko University in Bida.
Edusoko University Bida, is planned to be a foremost university, conceived by sons and daughters of Nupeland to cater for the educational needs of the people, especially in making University Education accessible and affordable to the youths.
The board of trustees inaugurated by the Estu Nupe at his palace in Bida has the former Governor of Niger state, Engineer Abdulkadir Kure as Chairman and the chairman/editor–in–chief of LEADERSHIP newspapers group, Mr. Sam Nda- Isaiah as secretary.
Other members of the committee are, Aliyu Dalhatu, former minister of agriculture Prof. Sheik Abdullah, former vice chancellor FUT Minna, Prof. Mohammed Abdullahi Daniya, Alhaji Manzuma Tsoeda Mamma, Alhaji Aliyu Abdullahi, Alhaji Muhammad Ndagba Enagi, Alhaji Haruna Yahaya, Niger state grand Qadi, Alhaji Muhammad Abdulmumini Enagi, and the rector of the federal polytechnic Bida, Engineer Abdullahi Sule.
The Estu Nupe, while speaking at the inauguration, said the occasion marked the beginning of a journey towards actualising the vision of having a university that will avail the people of Nupe land and beyond access to university education.
He said those appointed into the board of trustees were appointed based on their contributions in their choosing careers to the development of humanity and the society at large. He expressed optimism that they would deliver in their assignment to establish a qualitative University.
The royal father posited that despite the presence of two universities; IBB university Lapai and federal University of technology Minna, in Niger state there were always cases of candidates not gaining admission even if they were qualified.
“Many candidates have been looking for admission, if 5,000 or 10,000 candidates seek for admission, hardly would 2,000 gain admission, so this university will open new admission opportunity for qualified candidates, so you have to help us, you have done well in all your areas, this is another task for you”, the traditional ruler charged the board of trustees members.
Also in an interview, the Estu Nupe said he expected the board to come up with practical steps towards the takeoff of the university within six months while saying that the board of trustees would be responsible for the recruitment of qualified academic staff as well as the management of funds.
He said: “We have identified the structures and we have already submitted our academic brief to the National University Commission (NUC), they are going through it, the next thing is for them to send inspectors, to inspect our facilities which are already prepared, in terms of classroom, laboratories, library. We are prepared to receive the NUC inspectors”.
There is no doubting the fact that the royal father is enthusiastic about the project that would not only afford the youths university education but would serve as another symbol of unity for the Nupe people.
The royal father was therefore optimistic that by the quality of the people who are to serve in the board of trustees of the University would be of the desired quality that will provide the younger ones with qualitative education.
From the conceptual view, the University is to address the increasing challenges posed by the number of youths that seek for admission every year without succeeding.
However, in response to the inauguration speech by the Estu Nupe, Professor Sheik Abdullah, a former minister of agriculture and a member of the BOT said there must be a balance between quality and quantity in the desire to establish a university.
He emphasised that in striking the congruity, there must be variables that would function the overall vision of establishing the University, hence the BOT must do its work based on acceptable standard.
Also responding after the inauguration, the Chairman / Editor in Chief LEADERSHIP newspapers, Mr. Sam Nda-Isaiah who is the secretary of the BOT pledged the commitment of the members of the BOT to the University project.