Vice Chancellor, National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Professor Vincent Ado Tenebe has disclosed that, the university was targeting jacking up its students population to 500,000 before the end of next year.
This was as he assured Nigerians seeking admission into the university of express admission, beating his chest that no prospective student needs godfather to push for admission into the institution.
The Vice Chancellor made this known while speaking at an interactive Ramadan breakfast session with Journalists in Kaduna on Sunday, saying that, NOUN has given every intending student liberty of registration without stringent measure since they are matured students with wealth of experiences in different fields of human endeavours.
He said the number of student enrollment continued to increase on daily basis with over 300,000 students currently studying at the Ivory Tower, promising to hit enrollment figure of 500, 000 ahead of official target of 1.5 million students before he leaves office next year.
Professor Tenebe also assured that, the university has put in place measures to checkmate cyber fraud since major activities of the institution have to do with online, saying that the measures would not be disclosed in the interest of safe guarding the university.
He said, “The number of students will increase because Nigerians will wait until when they know that examination is coming and they will be looking for who to beg to allow them register when they have all the liberty to do it, without begging, but they will wait when it is very difficult that is when they will get letters from senators or members representing them, so that they will be helped when they had all the time in the world to do it without anybody to claim the credit of assisting them.
“We allow you to register this semester and next semester you might disappear only to appear in another semester and we will not question you because we have given you that liberty. My last assessment about two days ago of total students admitted in Open University now, stands at 308,000. We have just started semester registration, already, 65,000 students are registered.
“So we can say we have moved the Open University to 308,000 students but the number of active students changes from semester to semester. We are still not happy because I set a target for myself that before I leave office, which will be 2015, God willing, I want to see the population of the university to hit 500,000. But the target set for this university is to ensure that at least we have 1.5 million students in our enrolment and we can manage that. That is the only we can reach out to Nigerians which population is already 170 million.
“As regards cyber fraud, we have not experienced that yet because we have strategies to deal with it and those strategies I will not disclose because that is in the interest of safe guarding the university. The same applies to cyber crime.
“Some of our activities are online, like admission, registration and even accessing some of our materials. But because we know the kind of environment we are, being in Africa where we have some technological challenges, we also utilize other technologies, such as print media or even sometimes using the radio and television and recorded programme to reach out to our students. Sometimes we do have challenges in network.
“When we look at organizations that base their operation on online, like the banks, security, even the mass media, sometimes, you want to carry out operation, you get network failure, that is one aspect of technology we have to cope with. I want you to know that this network failure is not only peculiar to Nigeria. It also happens to advanced countries. We do experience that sometime and we have to cope with it,” he said.