Emir of Gumi in Zamfara state and a lifetime member of Body of Benchers in Nigeria, Justice Lawan Gumi, has pledged to take the issue of law graduates of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) personally “until it is put to bed”.
The Emir said this when he paid a visit to the Vice-Chancellor of the university, Professor Abdalla Uba Adamu, at the university’s headquarters in Abuja.
Gumi, a former Abuja chief judge, had led a delegation to the NOUN headquarters seeking the establishment of a Study Centre in Gumi town and in what appeared to be a perfect moment for a right move, the VC seized the opportunity to give his nod for the establishment of the Centre in Gumi and to also table the obnoxious logjam with the Council of Legal Education (CLE) over law graduates of NOUN.
Adamu told the emir that in view of his position, he should intervene in resolving the problem with the CLE as all NOUN programmes, including law, are duly accredited by NUC like any other conventional university in Nigeria.
Responding, Justice Gumi said the CLE “is not the highest regulating body. That honour belongs to the Body of Benchers of which I am a lifetime member.”
He asked the VC to formally put the request in writing addressed to him as a lifetime member of Body of Benchers. “I can then intervene.
“It doesn’t make any sense for people to go through a programme and then denied opportunity to go to law school. I will take this as my personal effort in resolving this problem.”
The Emir had earlier told the VC that they came to the university “to support the federal government in establishing this institution, which is a worthwhile venture by the federal government and any well-meaning venture should support it.
“We are also here to request the Vice-Chancellor to consider setting up a Study Centre in Gumi Emirate of Zamfara state, one of the educationally less privileged in the country.”
He said apart from the recently established federal university in Gusau, there has not been any federal institution in Zamfara, a pointer to its present sorry state of educational backwardness.
The emir said establishing a NOUN centre in Gumi Emirate would not only cater for the emirate alone but the two neighbouring states of Sokoto and Kebbi, owing to its strategic location.
Already, the Emirate had secured a temporary site for the immediate take up of the centre when approved by the university, and disclosed that a 100 hectare of land has been donated by the community to show their support.
On his part, the VC, flanked by the university registrar, Bursar and Librarian thanked the emir for his pledge and his personal visit to the headquarters of NOUN, which he described as the first by any emir.
He also submitted to the emir the “Standard Machinery” needed for establishment of any Study Centre and promised that when finally fulfilled, a law programme would be the first to be offered in the centre.