Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Jonathan signs bill for new retirement ages

I read this morning that Jonathan signed into law a bill enabling University professors to retire at 70. This was one of ASUU's major demands, as it is a quick-fix to a problem that runs even deeper, but I think otherwise... Nigeria seems to have a fixation with treating symptoms - and not fighting the underlying causes of her problems.

Problem: Many professors (those that manage to stay in Nigeria) are retiring and we are having increasingly fewer professors in our Universities. Solution: increase retirement age so that they can serve for 5 years longer.

In my opinion, this is not very wise.

In my opinion, we do not need older professors to lecture for longer, we need younger people who are knowledge-driven to become professors. Nigeria needs to make a life of academia attractive. Students considering a PhD need to know they will maintain a similar quality of life in the future as their colleagues who choose careers in oil companies. PhDs need to be respected, and they should be granted opportunities outside of the classroom to contribute to societal development.

If we do not strike at the root-causes, we might be surprised to have ASUU go on strike in another 5 years for the retirement age to be increased to 75.

Any thoughts?

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