Up until the early nineties, the Federal Republic of Nigeria was one of the outstanding political and economic partners of Hungary whose joint cooperation inter alia focused on issues of water resources. The bilateral relations began to intensify again two years ago, with the partners viewing education as the primary area of cooperation.
The memorandum of understanding between the Federal Ministry of Water Resources of Nigeria and the National University of Public Service will likely lead to Nigerian participation in the university’s international water resources management MA programme which is currently under preparation. The programme is developed by the Sustainable Development Studies Cabinet of NUPS lead by dr. Gábor Baranyai and joined by Prof. Dr. András Szöllősi-Nagy, Director of the Division of Water and Secretary of the International Hydrological Programme of UNESCO. Planned to be launched next autumn, the programme would fill in a niche at a global level, providing up-to-date knowledge on the hydrological, international law, institutional and public administration aspects and bases of international water resources management to current and future professionals in public administration. Signed for three years, the memorandum of understanding is expected to advance the university’s appearance on the international education market and the training of next generation Hungarian water management experts.
During the signing ceremony, Prof. Dr. András Patyi expressed the honour and pleasure of welcoming the honourable Minister of Water Resources from Nigeria. The rector reminded that NUPS is an open university having more than 100 international partner institutions. Nevertheless, he also mentioned that this is the first time NUPS signs a memorandum of understanding with another country’s ministry. Furthermore, Professor Patyi highlighted the Sustainable Development Studies Cabinet of NUPS, including its important role in the research and education of water governance. Regarding the signed memorandum of understanding, he emphasized his conviction that the document opens a new chapter in Hungarian-Nigerian relations within water resources education.
The honourable Minister Suleiman H. Adamu said that the memorandum of understanding opens a wide range of opportunities for cooperation between the two parties, and that in this regard the main research and education partner of NUPS could be the National Water Resources Institute. He indicated that as a developing country the Federal Republic of Nigeria is looking forward to Hungary’s best practices inter alia in the field of water supply, water quality and hydrology.
Vice-Rector for Continuing Education and International Affairs Prof. Dr. Norbert Kis reminded that African countries have been receiving increasing focus in our efforts of establishing international relations, and that this trend is in line with the foreign policy of the Hungarian Government. The Vice-Rector also added that in the last couple of years NUPS welcomed study groups from the Federal Republic of Nigeria, including representatives from the National Defence College and the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies.