The OIC-founded Islamic University in Uganda (IUIU) has granted admission to Christian students from Nigeria to study in the institution, saying it is open to all people irrespective of religion and ethnicity.
The institution's vice rector in charge of academic affairs, Dr. Mouhamad Mpezamihigo, told the Daily Trust in Kaduna yesterday that he and his team from Uganda are in Nigeria to promote the university and attract quality students from Nigeria and offer them affordable and quality university education.
He said that even though the university was established by the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC), it admits students from all religions, nations and ethnicity while it also recruits staff of all religious faiths.
"We do not force anyone to embrace Islam but they are taught the beauty of co-existence and religious tolerance," he stressed.
Mpezamihigo also said the institution had recently got an influx of students of other faith due to the calibre of the institution, saying "I can't remember having a non-Muslim student from Nigeria but we do have other international students who are non-Ugandans and non-Nigerians of other faith who have passed through the institution. The difference we have made is to allow freedom in spite of the school's code of conduct".
He said over 30 persons have indicated interest from Kaduna State and have been offered admission into the institution. "We are moving to other states so as to canvass for students," he added.
"It is a university for more than 57 member countries but only located in Uganda for the English speaking sub-Saharan Africa. We do offer science based-programmes and also arts and humanities. Our programmes are more than 60 and they range from certificate to PHD".
"For the Nigerian educational system, those who have finished their secondary school without added qualifications will require to undergo a one year remedial programme before going into a three year degree programme and they must have five credits," he said.
The university, which has been in existence for about 25 years, has graduated over 11,000 students from more than 23 countries.
The idea to start IUIU was conceived at the second summit of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC) in 1974. The university was inaugurated in February 1988 with 80 students. The main objective of the university is to serve the higher education needs of the English-speaking Muslim community in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Source: Christiana T. Alabi, "Uganda Islamic Varsity to Admit Christian Students From Nigeria" All Africa July 31, 2012
Reproduced with permission from Islam Today