Only 38 Female VCs Have Headed Nigerian Varsities Since 1960 – Committee Of Vice-Chancellors


Prof. Yakubu Ochefu

The Secretary-General of the Committee of Vice-Chancellors of Nigerian Universities, Prof. Yakubu Ochefu, has disclosed that “Only 38 out of the over 720 individuals who have held the position of vice chancellor in the Nigeria University System since 1960 are women.”

Ochefu disclosed this in Abuja at an event to unveil the 60th anniversary committee.

He said even though a number of the over 720 Vice-chancellors are deceased, many are still serving in various universities across the country.

He said the committee, which held its first meeting in 1962 and composed of Vice-Chancellors of Federal, States, and Private Universities in Nigeria is set to celebrate 61 years of its existence and has been working very quietly in the background in improving the university system.

Prof Ochefu said the major initiatives of policies the education system has today are from the meetings and inputs of the CVC such as harmonisation of the academic calendar, National Youth Service Corps, Joint Admission Matriculation Boarding, improvement of the welfare of the staff of the university staff, predatory journals to promote good journal practices in the university system and the minimum academic benchmark and core curriculum of the university.

He said the university system went through so many challenges ranging from funding and access but was able to overcome some and that celebrating 60 years was a milestone achievement as water had passed through the bridges but was able to overcome.

The don, however, blamed poor research funding on the reason why Nigerians, especially from the intellectual community don’t win the Nobel Laureate prizes, saying, that for Nigerians to feature in the Nobel prize nomination, there must be a breakthrough in cutting-edge research.

He said: “To win a Nobel prize is a product of sustained and rigorous research in the academic discipline, it is not a one-off thing. The average age for a Nobel prize winner is 50 years, which means that the person would have been doing research for at least 10 years to make a breakthrough in his area of specialisation.”

Speaking further, Ochefu said the CVNU since its inception in 1962 has been pursuing its core values of improving access, improving funding, research, innovation, harmonization of the school calendar, enhancing intellectual property, good journal practice, plagiarism detection software, new curriculum inputs and stability of the University system in Nigeria.

“We are currently on the verge of launching a tertiary institutions and research repository scheme that will be used by Nigerian Universities. We are also working on the Convocation ceremonies and awards of Honorary degrees by Universities as it is not properly managed by some of them.

‘We also provide international collaborations, peer review, case studies and exchange of ideas with other Universities across the world to benchmark our successes and challenges, especially with Universities with longer histories of up to 700 years.

“You can see that in the past 60 years, CVNU has been working quietly at the background for the Nigeria University system,’ he said.

Meanwhile, the 60th anniversary scheduled to be held on Monday in Abuja would have President Bola Tinubu and Vice President Kashim Shettima as distinguished guests of honour, while the President of the Nigerian Academy of Science, Prof. Ekanem Braide is billed to be the Keynote Speaker.



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