The Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, on Tuesday met with the leaders from the troubled southern part of the state on ways to find lasting solution to the crisis in the area.
At the meeting, which held at the Sir Kashim Ibrahim Government House in the state capital, el-Rufai announced the immediate re-opening of tertiary institutions closed down in Southern Kaduna in December.
The schools affected include the state College of Education, Gidan Waya; Kaduna State University, Kafanchan campus; and the School of Nursing and Midwifery, also located in Kafanchan.
The schools were shut down following the crisis between herdsmen and farmers.
While receiving the stakeholders from southern part of the state, the governor said that following the improvement in the security situation in the area, the government decided to reopen all tertiary institutions in the area.
He added that the government had decided to adopt a multi-campus structure for all its tertiary institutions.
According to him, the government will locate at least one campus in every local government area of the state.
The new policy, he said, had been approved by the State Executive Council to increase access to higher education, “make accreditation of courses more cost-effective and respond concretely to the desire by several communities to host tertiary institutions.”
A multi-campus structure, he explained, would help to make the state’s tertiary institutions more inclusive and expand the range of courses that students could study by making most courses available in all campuses.
The governor said, “Memo presented to the State Executive Council indicates that the government hopes that the various campuses spread across the state can over time evolve into full-fledged universities in their own right. That is how the campuses of the University of California system and those of the University of London have evolved.
“This multi-campus policy will be implemented in a way that assigns at least one tertiary institution to each of the 23 local government areas. The laws of some of our institutions are already being amended to reflect this.”
He said his administration was committed to transforming the state university into a world-class institution in the long-term.
He commended the delegation, among whom were Air Commodore Emmanuel Jekada (retd.) and Bishop George Dodo, the Catholic Bishop of Zaria, for their efforts at restoring peace to the affected local government areas.
“I salute you for helping to uphold a common humanity, for keeping the voice of reason alive.
“It is voices like yours that are helping to anchor peace, upsetting the designs of people who think that a relentless focus on ethnicity and religion is the best way to advance their personal agenda.
“We are determined not to allow anyone to profit from strife. Thank you for your contributions to the steady advance of peace.”
Bushop Dodo, who is also the state Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria, said it was clear that the government had good intentions and was doing a lot in the state.