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Tinubu directs inclusion of NOUN graduates in NYSC scheme, law school



President Bola Tinubu has directed the Ministry of Education to include graduates of the National Open University in the National Youth Service Corps scheme. Punch reports.

Tinubu also resolved the longstanding admittance of NOUN Law graduates to participate in Law School in the country for equal opportunities.

He made the disclosure during his presentation at the 13th convocation ceremony of NOUN on Saturday, at the university’s Convocation Arena, Jabi, Abuja.

Before now, NOUN graduates in 2017 were assured by the former vice chancellor of the institution, Abdallah Adamu, that they would soon be able to participate in the National Youth Service Corps and the Nigerian Law School.

Adamu, in an interview, said, “The fact is that the National University Commission law doesn’t allow those who do part-time studies to do NYSC, and the original Act that established NOUN says we offer courses by correspondence, and that is the expression NYSC is using to say ‘if it’s a correspondence course, then it is part-time, if it’s part-time, then the students are not eligible for NYSC.’

A few years later, a Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt squashed a suit by Law graduates of NOUN seeking admission into the Nigerian Law School.

Some graduates of the NOUN Law Department instituted a legal action on May 12, 2015, against the Council of Legal Education, the National University Commission, the Attorney General of the Federation and NOUN over their refusal to admit them into the Law School.

In their suit, the graduates wanted the court to compel the relevant authorities to make provisions to include graduates of the NOUN in the Nigerian Law School as benefiting from law graduates from other institutions.

But Tinubu gave the new directive through the Deputy Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission, Biodun Saliu, who represented him at the convocation on Saturday, adding that the opportunity is within the age bracket as allowed by the law.

He said, “With the changing demographics of our great nation, the government has recognised the importance of allowing NOUN graduates to participate in the NYSC scheme.

“The doors of the Law School are now open to the graduates, ensuring equal opportunities for all. Any remaining concerns or uncertainties should be promptly addressed by the Federal Ministry of Education.

“We will continue to do this in order to improve quality, access, and affordability.

“Government is, therefore, committed through the Federal Ministry of Education and the NUC to provide the enabling environment to ensure a good delivery of this mode of education in Nigeria.”

The president noted that the gathering was not just a celebration of the graduates’ academic successes but also highlighted the crucial role that Open and Distance Education has in shaping the nation’s educational framework.

He, therefore, affirmed his administration’s commitment to enhancing ODL to expand access to higher education across the nation, emphasizing that the utilisation of ODL is essential for meeting the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

The president expressed satisfaction with what NOUN has become, stressing that it is a central figure in advancing the government’s commitment to achieving educational goals through ICT.

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