Obasanjo challenges African varsities

June 22, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 22 – Former Nigerian President Olosegun Obasanjo has urged African universities to come up with programmes aimed at finding solutions to challenges facing the continent.

Mr Obasanjo said unless universities focus more attention on ways and means of finding solutions facing the continent, answers to the developmental challenges that society faces cannot be found.

He said it is time the African universities came up with relevant programmes by re-orienting them to reflect modern trends towards knowledge-based economies and to aggressively foster creativity and innovation.

Mr Obasanjo made the remarks on Tuesday when he made a courtesy call on Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka at his Jogoo House Office.

He said the system of education in Africa that was introduced by colonialists is to blame for underdevelopment in the continent, noting that the colonialists had come to Africa to develop themselves and not Africans.

Mr Obasanjo said it was now time for African governments to focus on projects aimed at creating employment opportunities for the youth, with a view to uplifting their living standards and that of the coninent.

“This century is for Africa but Africans must do more than wishing it,’’ he said.

Mr Obasanjo is in the country on an invitation by the Kenya Institute of Management (KIM) where he will give a key note address on governance, leadership and management convention in Mombasa.

He said African governments should ensure that there is proper separation of powers from the Executive and Legislature.

“We cannot continue to appoint ministers from among Members of Parliament and claim that we are separating powers of the Executive from the Legislature,” said Mr Obasanjo.

Mr Musyoka stressed the importance of integration in Africa as a means to spurring its developmental progress, thus addressing the challenges confronting her people.

“It is time the African continent integrates itself in terms of development so as to confront the problems facing the continent,” said Mr Musyoka.

He said there was need to strengthen the development in the continent through New Partnerships for African Development (NEPAD).


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