Nigeria loses about N160bn to Ghana every year in university education cost, as some 75,000 Nigerian students travel to the neighboring West African nation for their academic needs, Dr. Wale Babalakin, chairman of the Committee of Pro-Chancellors of Nigeria revealed.
In recent years, countries like the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada have seen an increase in the number of Nigerians vying to gain admission into their universities and paying millions for the education that they cannot get in their own country.
Now more Nigerians are flocking close to home, seeking out universities in Ghana. While the cost of schooling in Ghana is not quite as high as an education in Western countries, Babalakin is cited in Punch as claiming that Nigerians paid N160 billion to study in Ghana, more than the nation’s education budget in 2011.
Babalakin said this at the first Leading Light award presentation of the University of Ilorin Alumni Association in Ilorin on Friday.
He said that while in 1975, four Nigerian universities were rated among the top 20 institutions in Africa, today Nigeria could not boast of having a university in the top 10 in Africa.
The chairman of the presentation called for serious education reform, saying that fixing the nation’s poor educational system will go a long way toward righting many of the nation’s wrongs.
“If we have educated society, most of the ills of the society will reduce dramatically. It has been shown that there is a direct relationship between the quality of education and the welfare of the society.
“If you create a well educated society, you end up creating a lovely society and you end up creating a society of great value” he said.