An academic, Prof. Nnadozie Inyama, says that Imo lacks the resources to run quality tertiary institutions.
Inyama, a retired professor of English Studies at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN), disclosed this on Tuesday.
Inyama, who was reacting to Gov. Rochas Okorocha’s announcement of the establishment of six new tertiary institutions in Imo, said the government should rather consolidate existing institutions than establish new ones.
“They have to consolidate Imo State University let them equip the polytechnic before creating another one.
“All those places will be near me after all Imo is just a small place, you can go from any point in Imo and in less than one and half hour you will be in the state capital from any part of Imo.
“So it is a very small place, so to create the impression that education must be such that the institution must be at the back door of every village is not correct.
“There are shortages and inadequacies in terms of the workforce, in terms of laboratories, anything you can talk of in the university system.
“So, if he can guarantee that, and I doubt that he can, because of corruption, apathy and general mismanagement tendencies, these things will work against all those places.
And they will just become a gathering place for people who will be asking themselves questions, why are we here? What are we supposed to be doing here?
Inyama acknowledged that the siting of institutions attracted development to communities but warned that the establishment of ramshackle schools would not serve the needs of the 21st Century.
Among the institutions proposed by Okorocha is University of Engineering, Onuimo, University of Agriculture, Aboh Mbaise, Ihitte Uboma College of Education and Ehime Polytechnic.
Inyama said that any new institution in the state could be viable considering the people’s quest for education but pointed out that there were associated problems.
“It is a good intention to make a statement of that nature at the state level. But then how implementable will they be?
“How will the policies be pursued if the current governor leaves office? Will the new man who comes in believe the ideal of the issue of six more institutions?’’
He said that considering that the existing higher institutions in the state were located within a radius of the state capital, it would be a wonderful idea to spread out to other parts.
He said the establishment of new institutions could give a psychological boost to the beneficiaries but there is the need to think about their employment prospects.
Inyama said that it was doubtful that Okorocha was hoping to build quality institutions in the next three years and described such dream as a joke.
“For me, it would have been a wonderful concept but the practicalising of it, I have my doubt.
Inyama said that establishing new tertiary institutions now may not enjoy the blessings of a new administration due to lack of continuity in governance in Nigeria.