The National Universities Commission has said it is currently processing applications from 240 individuals and organisations to establish private universities in the country.
The NUC Executive Secretary, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, said this on Tuesday while meeting with bursars from about 40 federal universities in Abuja.
Rasheed, who urged the bursars to be honest and thorough in financial allocations to their universities, said it was embarrassing that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission found corrupt practices in the university financial system.
He said, “Interactions of this nature are to improve our country’s university system. It may be of interest to you that the university system in Nigeria is growing. We have as of today 153 universities. We have federal, state and private universities.
“We have 68 private universities which is the highest of the three categories. And the number is growing because the NUC is currently processing over 240 applications for private universities in the country.
“We decided to invite all of you, federal universities’ bursars. There are many areas where you have to put your heads together.”
The NUC boss noted that the EFCC Acting Chairman, Ibrahim Magu, would visit the NUC to discuss the investigations of some VCs among other issues.
“The EFCC is investigating so many universities as you are aware. One of the areas being investigated by the EFCC is the furniture allowance. Many universities fail to interpret what we mean by the furniture allowance. Common sense tells us that the government will never allocate N5.77m as furniture allowance to any VC.
“Yet, many bursars in many universities allow vice-chancellors to take N480,000 monthly as furniture allowance and you know it is wrong. This is why whenever the EFCC comes, there is crisis, and the VCs and the bursars are the easy targets. This interaction is to address these issues,” he added.