Immediate past Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC) Prof. Abubakar Rasheed has expressed displeasure over Nigerians criticising the establishment of more universities, saying only myopic minds would make such insinuations.
Prof. Rasheed, who stepped down as Executive Secretary on Tuesday, said countries like America, Brazil, and India had thousands of universities catering to their tertiary needs and they have never complained.
He lamented that Nigerians had a penchant for criticising what belongs to them at their detriment, stressing that he had instances where Nigerians who after graduating with lesser degrees go outside the country for higher studies and come out exceedingly better.
According to the former Executive Secretary, Nigerians go outside to study and do much better as a means of benchmarking the quality of Nigerian graduates.
He equally said he wished that universities in Nigeria be shored up above 4000 to create greater access to undergraduates seeking tertiary education.
He allayed fears held by many about where the majority of the graduates would work upon graduation, saying such sentiments were unnecessary as education was the best way to fight poverty.
He made the observation on Friday in Abuja, while handing over the baton of leadership to the Deputy Executive Secretary, Chris Maiyaki.
Prof. Rasheed had up to three more years to the expiration of his tenure but retired on Tuesday, to continue his teaching career at Bayero University, Kano.
Debunking insinuations that he was retiring to evade probe, he said he wanted to fulfill his ambition to become a Professor Emeritus before he attained the age of 70 and the best means of achieving that was to return to the classroom to teach.
He was noted to have increased the stakes in private university education by issuing several licenses to private individuals to operate universities.