The Executive Chairman, Federal Character Commission (FCC), Prof. Shuaibu Oba Abdulraheem has tasked university administrators to observe the federal character principle in staff recruitment and appointments at the management level.
Abdulraheem made this call during a one day seminar for Chief Executive Officers of Nigerian Universities themed: “Actualising Federal Character Objectives in Universities Administration” in Abuja.
He said: “It may be observed that while universities strive to internationalise their academic programmes and staffing, there is the progressive localization if not ethnicisation, of the non-technical establishment.”
According to him, “The objective and position of the Federal Character was to ensure that the heterogeneous character of the nation is reflected in the composition of the staff of all public institutions funded by government including universities.”
In his remarks, the Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission, Prof. Julius Okojie posited that the commission recently established nine new universities to promote equity and access for students.
“The new universities were allocated to states where there was no federal universities to create equity for students and employment for the indigenes especially the junior cadre,” he added.
He urged the university administrators to make deliberate efforts to space out employment to cover all the geo political zones but maintained that merit should not be compromised in capturing the geopolitical zones.
In a chat with journalists, the Vice Chancellor, Federal University Oyo Ekiti, Prof. Chinedu Nebo highlighted that even though the administrator’s wants to space out appointments to the geopolitical zones, some professionals were selective in choosing areas to work.
“Of course we want to spread out employment but you will discover that even when we advertise for some positions in the media professionals from other geopolitical zones find it difficult to apply, come in and take such positions. I recommend that the commission should embark on massive enlightenment to tackle this challenge,” he added.