Kano State Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje said on Wednesday that his administration had spent about N1.8 billion to sponsor students to Nigerian private universities.
He alleged that they were abandoned by his predecessor, Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso.
The governor gave the names of the private universities as: American University of Nigeria (AUN), Yola; Crescent University, Al-Qalam University, Bells University of Technology, Otta; and Igbinedion University, Okada.
Ganduje spoke during the presentation of certificates to 20 graduating students, at the State Executive Council meeting at Africa House of Government House, Kano.
Among the 20 AUN, Yola graduates are two first-class products, Abubakar Bala Musa and Rabi’u Ibrahim Kabiru, who read Science Software Engineering. Eighteen got second class upper division.
A statement by the governor’s Chief Press Secretary (CPS), Abba Anwar, said the students were taken to the university during the administration of Kwankwaso, with the payment of their tuition and other fees at less than 10 per cent.
Ganduje said: “When we came onboard in 2015, we inherited over 1,150 students from the administration of Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso, who were sponsored to universities within and outside the country.
“We were told that all of their fees were paid 100 per cent. But this turned out not to be true.”
For the AUN students, the governor berated the percentage of what was paid for them, describing it as “very insignificant.”
“But since we consider them our children, we paid over 80 per cent of the required fees for them to finish their studies,” he said.
While congratulating the graduating students for their outstanding performance, the governor said he hoped to see them excel in future.
He hailed their efforts in making Kano State proud, with their excellent performance at AUN.
“We will give you the necessary assistance. We are glad to hear that some of you have already started engaging in entrepreneurship. This is a right step in the right direction.” Ganduje said.
He promised to consider them in any recruitment that will come up at the Ministries, Departments and Agencies.
Hafsat Adhama, who spoke on behalf of the graduating students, thanked the Ganduje administration.
By Fanen Ihyongo