Two prisoners are among the 5, 975 students that will be awarded various degrees by the National Open University of Nigeria during its sixth convocation ceremony scheduled for this Saturday in Abuja.
This much was dislosed by the institution’s Vice Chancellor, Prof. Abdallah Adamu.
According to Prof. Adamu, NOUN has a student population of 224,000 out of which 5,975 will be graduating at the event.
This is the first time that people serving jail terms would be graduating from the university.
The NOUN VC said that prisoners who want to study at the university would not be charged any tuition fee.
Adamu, who spoke at a briefing ahead of the institution’s convocation ceremony scheduled for this Saturday, added that the institution would graduate 12 first class students and two prisoners.
He said, “If a prisoner wants to study in NOUN, it is free of charge. We feel that while they are there, they should not be denied education. But, once he or she is out of prison they will pay.”
Adamu said the law establishing the university would be amended by the National Assembly to expunge the phrase that says the university will provide knowledge through ‘correspondence’ and replace it with ‘Open Distance Learning.’
He also said law students from the university would attend law school, while graduates would soon be mobilised for the National Youth Service Corps after the amendment.
“I can conveniently tell everybody that is worried about our students not being admitted into the Nigerian Law School. The Senate is holding public hearing on it,” he emphasised.
It would be recalled that NOUN had on August 9 2016, formally announced the suspension of admissions into its Law programme.
The decision, according to Adamu, was sequel to the exclusion of graduates of its Law programme by the Council of Legal Education from attending the mandatory Law School and the advice by the National Universities Commission that students should be stopped from undertaking the course, pending the resolution of the impasse.