President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, mentioned that the proposed Federal University of Health Sciences, Otukpo, Benue State, might be named after his predecessor, Senator David Mark.
Saraki said this at the public hearing on the Federal University of Health Sciences Otukpo (Establisment) Bill 2017 held in Abuja on Monday.
The Chief Whip, Senator Sola Adeyeye who represented the Senate President at the the event said there had been calls for naming the yet-to-be-established institution after Mark.
Saraki said, “I must also thank the esteemed sponsor of the bill, my predecessor and former President of the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Senator David Mark, for his vision and steadfastness. He has spared no effort in promoting the bill and canvassing for the establishment of FUHSO.
“His focus on this goal is, no doubt, a measure of his commitment to alleviating the huge shortfall in the education and training of critical personnel in the nation’s health sector – and to the people of Benue-South, who the distinguished senator represents.
“Indeed, I understand there is now a clamour in some quarters, as well as among some of my distinguished colleagues, to rename the university, upon its establishment, after Senator Mark – and the reason is understandable, when we consider the passion with which he has prosecuted the cause of the proposed institution.”
The Senate President explained that the Bill sought the establishment of the university to scale up the specialised training of doctors, nurses, pharmacists and other professionals in the health sector as well as to address persisting admission deficit.
He said, “Figures show that only about 20 per cent of those who qualify and apply are admitted to medical schools in this country. In July of this year, a newspaper survey indicated that, of nearly 160,000 applicants, only 3000 gain admission into Nigerian tertiary institutions to study Medicine and related courses.