Nigeria has become the 18th Member State to sign the African Virtual University (AVU) Charter, paving way to delivery of tertiary education in the country’s institutions via Information and Communication Technologies (ICT).
The AVU charter was signed by Hon Minister of Education Prof. Ruqayyatu Ahmed Rufa’i OON at his Ministry’s offices in Abuja, Nigeria.
According to AVU Rector, Dr. Bakary Diallo the Charter will strengthen AVU’s cooperation with the Nigerian government and increase access to quality higher education and training through the innovative use of ICT.
Established in 1997, AVU has trained over 43,000 students and build the largest network of Distance and eLearning institutions in over 30 African Countries.
January last year, AVU received $95,588 from the Nigerian Technical Cooperation Fund to enhance its capacity to further its work in Mathematics and Sciences Teacher Education.
The country will now benefit from $15 million AVU Multinational Support Project II funded by the African Development Bank.
Other countries that are AVU Member States include Kenya, Senegal, Mauritania, Cote d’Ivoire, Mali, Tanzania, Mozambique, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Benin, Ghana, Guinea, Burkina Faso, Niger, South Sudan, Sudan, Guinea Bissau, The Gambia, and Nigeria. The number of AVU Member States has increased from 5 in 2010 to 18 in 2013.
The AVU based in Nairobi Kenya, recently signed an MOU with the African Union Commission to promote use of ICT in Education on the continent with focus on teacher education, content development, infrastructure, quality assurance, open education esources, capacity building and networking.
Nigeria has a population of over 170 million and has several universities and tertiary institutions. AVU will supplement those universities by reaching out some of its over 50 million internet users interested in online learning.