Bangladesh High Commission poised to collaborate with NOUN on ODL, others

By Debbie Nduba & Ibrahim Kabiru Sule

The High Commissioner of the People's Republic of Bangladesh to Nigeria, His Excellency Mr. Masudur Rahman, has said his country is desirous to go into collaboration with the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) in the areas of Open and Distance Learning (ODL), research, linkages, amongst others.

Rahman, accompanied by the Consular, Political Affairs of the High Commission, was speaking during a courtesy visit to the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Olufemi Peters, at the university headquarters in Abuja.

He said such collaboration is so imperative, as apart from the fact that the Bangladesh Open University (BOU) operates on a similar mode as NOUN, the two countries share a number of similarities.

While underscoring the importance of signing an MoU between the two open universities, Rahman explained that “Distance learning and technology has become a key tool to educational activities, especially in this period of the pandemic.”

As a precursor to the expected MoU, the envoy stated, a webinar meeting could be organised to share ideas. “Such collaboration will be a wonderful beginning. From my side I can approach the university through the relevant ministry.”

The envoy also requested the university to host the country's upcoming Golden Jubilee celebration, which also coincides with the 100 years of the birth of Bangladesh's founding father, where a video would be shown to the select guests.

Responding, the Vice-Chancellor welcomed them to the headquarters and expressed the university’s readiness to enter into such collaborations and urged him to come up with an official request, which will serve as the starting point of the collaboration.

Peters, who said the management will inform the university’s Governing Council of the development since it involves a cross-border issue, reiterated that NOUN is keen to develop the relationship, as similar one is already in existence with the Indira Gandhi National Open University in the neighbouring India.

The Vice-Chancellor also acknowledged the number of similarities that exist between the two nations and briefly explained that NOUN has about 500,000 students, with about 120,000 currently active in their various academic programmes, making it the largest in the African Continent.

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