The federal government has appealed to owners of private tertiary institutions to reduce their school fees to achieve their optimum carrying capacity.
Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, disclosed this on Thursday in Abuja during the 8th edition of the weekend ministerial press briefing.
According to him, over 30 per cent of total carrying capacity of some of the private tertiary institutions had not been utilised due to high school fees.
“The federal government had increased the admission and student capacity of the nation’s universities from 1.5 million in 2015 to about two million spaces.”
“With the low carrying-capacity of universities as against the growing number of qualified candidates, the government had established or licensed a total of 30 universities, bringing the total to 169. These comprise 43 federal universities, 47 state universities and 79 private universities,” he explained.
He added that the government had increased access to polytechnics, monotechnics and innovation enterprise institutions from 424,715 in 2014 to 517,943 in 2019.
“When we came into office in 2015, the total number of polytechnics/monotechnics/innovative enterprise institutions in the country stood at 298 with a combined carrying-capacity of 424,715 spaces. To expand access to the institutions, we established or licensed 71 such institutions during the period under review, with a carrying capacity of 93,228 spaces.”
While commending the Muhammadu Buhari administration, Adamu stated that Federal Government in 2015 inherited 147 National Certificate in Education (NCE) awarding institutions with a combined capacity of 385,240.
“In the last four years, we have granted approval to 27 new NCE-awarding institutions across the six geo-political zones, with a combined carrying- capacity of 60,200. I am glad to report that we have increased the total number of NCE-awarding institutions from 147 to 174, while also increasing their capacity from 385,240 to 445,440 spaces during the period under review.”
It was also recorded that in the three categories of tertiary education, namely: university, polytechnic and colleges of education, a total carrying capacity of 2,309,955 spaces were met.
“During the life span of our administration, we have increased the capacity to 653,428 spaces for tertiary education.”