The Committee of Vice-Chancellors of Nigerian Universities said it had developed the EagleScan Plagiarism Detection Software to fight against plagiarism and ensure the promotion of originality in academic research.
The organisation stated that the EPDS was developed in conjunction with directors of ICT of six Nigerian universities, and was now fully ready for adoption in all tertiary institutions in the country. It also stated that the equipment was an inventive move to improve the internal workings of the university system, like the University Transparency Accountability Software.
The Chairman of CVCNU, Prof. Samuel Edoumiekumo, also engaged the leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities on issues affecting university education in Nigeria.
The official statement read, “Edoumiekumo, in the course of the meeting, informed the (ASUU) President that the CVCNU, in its fight against plagiarism and promoting originality in academic research, has developed the EagleScan Plagiarism Detection Software.”
While calling on the federal and state governments to break the circle of industrial unrest which has crippled the universities for over 30 years, he lamented that Nigerian universities had been faced with a poor funding gap of N221 billion, incurred yearly between 2018 and 2021.
The Vice-Chancellors also called for a consistent academic calendar, saying that Nigerian public universities would not take their pride of place globally and regionally if the country could not guarantee its academic schedules.
Edoumiekumo formally congratulated Prof. Victor Osodeke on his emergence as National President of ASUU and acknowledged the efforts of ASUU as regards championing the repositioning of higher education in Nigeria. The meeting was attended by the Secretary-General of the CVCNU, Prof. Yakubu, Ochefu; some former presidents of ASUU, Dipo Fasina, Nasir Fagge, Biodun Ogunyemi, and other members of its National Executive Committee.
The CVCNU chairman urged key stakeholders in the university system to meet from time to time to discuss local and global best practices in tertiary education, innovative ways of confronting and managing challenges, and deep thinking on the future of the country’s university system.
He said, “Our universities are faced with very poor funding such that a gap of N221 billion has been incurred yearly from 2018 to 2021. There are problems associated with the implementation of IPPIS in federal universities; autonomy of universities, and the presence of several conflicting laws; the current status of the FG/university-based unions’ agreements; the lingering problem with the unions on IPPIS; and the poor state of security on university campuses.”
Edoumiekumo presented a report produced by CVCNU on the “Review of 2022 national budget as it affects Nigerian Federal Universities” to ASUU. The document highlighted some of the funding challenges in the universities.
The CVCNU chairman also shared with ASUU the draft of a Model Intellectual Policy for Nigerian Universities, which was developed in conjunction with the Nigerian Copyright Commission. He requested the input of ASUU before the final draft would be presented to universities in 2022.
Osodeke applauded the leadership of CVCNU for initiating the meeting and expressed the desire of the union to work with all genuine actors that would add value and make Nigerian universities better.
He lamented that a gulf had emerged in CVCNU/ASUU relations in recent times but was pleased by the meeting which he hoped would go a long way in forging closer ties.
Osodeke said all the issues raised by the CVCNU chairman and the appropriate response would be communicated to the committee in due course.
“I look forward to a meeting between ASUU and CVCNU in the first quarter of 2022 to discuss the broader issues raised by the CVCNU”, he said.
The ASUU President expressed concern about the politicisation in the appointment of Vice-Chancellors, and how in some instances, the choice of who became a VC had been narrowed down to the Local Government of the state where the university was located.