Dr. Wale Babalakin, Pro-Chancellor, University of Lagos (UNILAG), has said Nigeria needs well over N2.5 trillion annually to provide quality education at all levels.
Wale Babalakin made this known at a fund raising dinner organized by the Alumni of the UNILAG’s College of Medicine during the week.
He said that the government does not have enough resources to adequately fund a first class education in Nigeria, so other sources of funding must be put into consideration.
“The College of Medicine, UNILAG, is a very good product to celebrate. But to keep the flag flying, to maintain standards, we need substantial funding. Government alone cannot afford to fund education.
“To have quality education in Nigeria today at all levels, it requires N2.5 trillion per year. That is close to 50 per cent of total receipts of monies coming to the system, yet we cannot delay the funding of education.
“We cannot give low quality education because there is no money, so we must look at all sources. We must look at governmental sources, private sources and every other source to achieve the objective of funding a first class educational system, Babalakin stated.
He reminded the guests at the fund raising event of the good old days when the University College Hospital, Ibadan, was one of the top five hospitals in the Commonwealth, which included England, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia and Canada.
He added by saying that it was possible to have that high quality education and performance again, if we make it a priority.
“We have done it before and we can do it again. Between 1972 and 1975, UCH was the 4th to 5th rated hospital in the Commonwealth.
“So I don’t want you to place your ambition at the local level. I don’t want you to aim for the roof. Let’s start aiming for the sky. Let us have a vision that will take us out of this situation we are in; a vision that will reposition our educational system. Let’s have what we had as UNILAG students in 1978,” he added.