Africa urged to empower universities for Public Private Partnerships

Temitope Mustapha, Accra

Jamb boss, Professor Ishaq Oloyede

African leaders have been urged to invest in good governance and proper economic management, to accommodate Public Private Partnerships between universities and industries in Africa.

The former President of the Association of African Universities, AAU, Professor Ishaq Oloyede said this in Accra during a briefing on the 50 years existence of the association and the linkage between the Universities and Industries in Africa.

The Former AAU President explained that most of the industries in Africa are outposts of instituted companies, he stressed that as long as governments of African countries would not invest sufficiently in Africa the continent will continue to remain the way it is.

Speaking on the challenge of Africa not doing too well in Science and Technology, Professor Oloyede said Africa should learn to reform,transform and compensate its 25% science students at the basic level.

According to him, the “school system in Africa provides 75% humanities and 25% science, reversing the case at the higher education level is not possible. Africa should then reform ,transform and compensate its 25% science at the basic education level.”

Oloyede decried what he called Africa’s emphasis on certification and suggests that they should “catch them young” at the end of primary education through scholarships.

He advocated that bursaries be channeled to the areas of science and technology.

A former Secretary General of the AAU , Professor Olugbemiro Jegede, said enough funding should be provided to strengthen science education.

Professor Jegede urged African leaders to engage a short term solution in addressing the challenge of the short fall in science and technology.

He advised that a science village be set up in member countries as it was adopted in China and India.

“Apart from the fact that technocrats play a key role in addressing challenges of Africa not doing too well in science and technology, African leaders should engage in adopting China’s and India’s plan, by setting up science village, recruiting experts and remunerating them, ” Oloyede said

He urged African leaders to form partnership with the AAU to fully address the challenges.

On the role of the association in Africa, the AU Commission representative , Beatrice Njenga, said the AAU is playing a key role in the implementation of the AU harmonization strategy.

“We consider the AAU as the key agency for translating the AU vision into implementable reality in the area of higher education and research and in galvanizing the higher education community to contribute to the strategic thinking required for the realization of the aspirations of  Agenda 2063 in various sectors”Njenga said.

The AS representative hinted that the AAU is spearheading the dissemination and adoption of the African Quality Rating Mechanism that is designed to assist institutions in making self-assessment and to improve the quality of their higher education provision.

“The AU Commission would like to express appreciation to the AAU for spearheading the dissemination and adoption of the African Quality Rating Mechanism that is designed to assist institutions in making self-assessment to improve the quality of their higher education provision.”