One of the proposed Federal Universities of Medical Sciences was situated in Gashua town of Yobe North, Yobe state. Gashua is currently the home of Federal University Gashua, FUGA. FUGA was established in 2013 by the President Goodluck Jonathan administration. Since then, FUGA has normalised and continues to produce graduates in numerous fields of human endeavour.
Doubtlessly, having an additional federal university in Yobe state will positively and significantly improve the standard of education in the state. This is in line with the state government’s agenda, which led to the declaration of a state of emergency in the sector in 2019.
However, there are lots of varying and sometimes conflicting opinions among the good people of Yobe regarding its location. One popular view was the one that put Senate President Ahmad Lawan on the spot, underlining his lack of sensitivity to the plight of other parts of Yobe where no university has been situated.
It is difficult, according to others, to rule out that Senator Lawan is guided by sentiments either of tribe, region or undermining fellow Senator Ibrahim Mohammed Bomoi, whose constituency has no university at all. If this viewpoint is correct, Senator Lawan’s single action will jeopardise the existing cordial relationship between the various parts of Yobe state.
There is a need for collective efforts to draw the attention of those concerned so that the location of the new university will be moved to any of the local government areas of Yobe South.
Among the 17 local government areas of Yobe state, Potiskum is the most developed in terms of education, economy, and politics. It is a town that caters for all, irrespective of tribe, religion, or political affiliation. With its buoyancy in business activities, perhaps one can rightly opine that it should host the new university.
This will offer the advantages of seamless take-off, easy access and connection to other parts of the state and the nation, and the availability of decent social infrastructure.
Politically, this will strike an important balance: Yobe East has Yobe State University (YSU), Yobe North has FUGA, and Yobe South will have the new university.
It is at this point that I call the attention of Senators Ibrahim Geidam and Ibrahim Bomoi to add weight to this important matter that is not only fair but necessary. There is also room for critical stakeholders such as the Governor Mai Mala Buni; royal fathers in the state; civil society organisations and others to support the location of the Federal University of Medical Science in Potiskum. This way, Yobe will be great.
Kasim Isa Muhammad,Potiskum, Yobe state.