Abuja - The Joint Admissions and Matriculations Board (JAMB) has lifted the embargo it placed on eight universities in the country.
The institutions include Rivers State University of Science and Technology, Port Harcourt, Abia State University, Uturu, Lagos State University, Ojo and Ebonyi State University,Abakaliki.
The rest are Enugu State University of Science and Technology, Enugu, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye in Ogun, Evan Enwerem University, Owerri and Anambra State University, Uli.
Prof. Dibu Ojerinde, the Registrar of JAMB, announced this in Abuja on Wednesday while briefing newsmen.
Ojerinde said the universities were banned from admitting new students because they were on strike for a long period thereby making it difficult for the usual semesters and academic years to run smoothly.
Ojerinde said that JAMB lifted the embargo after it had consulted with the affected institutions and various stakeholders in the Ministries of Education, who came along with their commissioners.
He said that JAMB decided to convene the meeting after making necessary arrangements to bring together pro-chancellors of the affected universities, vice chancellors, registrars and commissioners for education.
The registrar said that the move was aimed at summarising issues of admissions into those universities and infrastructure as well as ensure that they catch up with the other universities on programmed time-table for semesters up till 2011/2012 academic session.
``I am happy to say that everything that was agreed would be done and we hope that those universities will now be joining others in the country in all matters affecting admissions, examination time table, semesters and so on,’’ Ojerinde said.
He, however, expressed joy that the issues at stake were resolved amicably as students could now go back to those universities.
The registrar also used the medium to restate government’s commitment to providing all the necessary facilities to make sure that the programme works.
Ojerinda hinted that each university had submitted to it a schedule of how they would complete the distorted 2009/2010 academic session.
``Each university has given us a schedule of how they will complete the 2009/2010 academic session, almost all of them have completed the 2009/ 2010 academic year except one or two that will finish in February.
``As soon as they finish in February, they will start the 2010/2011 academic calendar and most of them will finish in November 2011 and concurrently 2011/2012 academic calendar will start and end in June 2012,’’ he said
Ojerinde said though there would definitely be a little bit of overlap, the institutions had made arrangements to cope.
He added that the issue of funds had been solved as the various proprietors in the ministries of education came along with their commissioners to assure the board how they would fund these universities to move forward.
``So, on our part, immediately they made the promises and signed the agreement, we will now go to the Internet to disband these institutions so that they can register candidates for the 2011/2012 session,’’ the registrar said
Ojerinde added that prospective students who wished to go to those universities could take the June 11, Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), to enable them be admitted into those institutions next session.
He said that the affected universities would begin the 2010/2011 session from March 2011 to end in October, while, the 2011/2012 session would begin in October 2011 to end in July 2012.
Earlier, Mr Samuel Akinbode, the Deputy Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), had reiterated the commission's commitment to accomplish the distorted academic calendar.
``NUC as a regulatory agency has agreed on the study the time-table. What we are going to do is to monitor the implementation of that time-table by each university.
``Our ultimate objective is to ensure that any graduate coming out of the Nigerian university system stands up to the standard anywhere in the world,’’ he said.
Akinbode used the medium to extract the commitments of the various state governments to make funds available to settle whatever agreements they had reached with the unions so as to avoid further distortions in the system.