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National Open University Scraps Law Programme



Nigerian Open University Scraps Law Programme

The National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) Law students have called out for help over the scrapping of the law programme by the University management, leaving students who are nearing completion of their projects in dilemma.

Documents seen by SaharaReporters show that on 25th of January, 2023, the University’s Senate ratified the scrapping of the law degree programme of the University, at the end of the 2023 second semester .

Concerned by the development, students under the aegis of “concerned law students” wrote the House of Representatives seeking intervention.

In the letter dated on 27th of October, 2023, the House of Representatives acknowledged the call for intervention while promising to convene a meeting between student representatives and the management of the Open University.

Other correspondences received show that between November 2023 and January, 2024, the National Assembly held a meeting between the students and the university management however, this has not led to a meaningful development.

SaharaReporters understands that over 1500 final year students of the university are affected by the decision to make the law department “cease to exist”.

These students are at the risk of not graduating despite spending millions to study the law degree in the institution.

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It was gathered that it cost about N3 million for a law student to graduate up to 500 level in the institution.

SaharaReporters earlier reported how students of the institution lamented their inability to be issued graduation certificates and failure of the university to convoke them, putting them in a dilemma of lacking evidence to show for their academic sojourn in the institution.

Although the University denied, NOUN, which operates a distance-learning and study Centre model, has been at the fore of controversies around issues of accreditation and management.

Students lament that the institution does not usually communicate developments to it and fails to attend to their queries on these developments that affect their academic wellbeing.

A student who does not want to be named noted that the development of the law students for instance was first seen on social media with no official communication to them.

“We were not notified, we only saw a statement on social media suggesting that the law programme would be stopped after we spent how many years on it and no one has offered any form of apology or genuine concern”.

It was also gathered that the university intends not to take in new law students in order to seek fresh accreditation for the law programme; however the legal dreams of the current 500-level law students and their investments for five years is threatened by the development of the institution’s law programme.

The Public Relations Officer of NOUN, Ibrahim Sheme, refused to comment on the development when contacted, asking SaharaReporters to instead visit him at the office.



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