Prof M. M. Akanbi SAN
ADDRESS OF THE VICE-CHANCELLOR, PROFESSOR MUHAMMED MUSTAPHA AKANBI SAN AT THE COMBINED 8TH AND 9TH CONVOCATION CEREMONY FOR THE AWARD OF POSTGRADUATE AND HONORARY DEGREES ON SATURDAY, DECEMBER 112021 AT THE MINI CONVOCATION ARENA OF KWARA STATE UNIVERSITY MALETE
Today is a special day in the life of this great university. Indeed, it is special because in the best tradition of foremost universities across the globe, we are here gathered for the combined 8th and 9th Convocation ceremony (Hybrid) of the Kwara State University, Malete. I therefore have the honour, privilege and pleasure to join the Chancellor, Pro-Chancellor, members of Council, Senate, Management, staff and students to warmly welcome our Visitor, His Excellency Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq to our great University and to the Combined 8th and 9th Convocation Ceremony of Kwara State University for the Award of Postgraduate and Honorary Degrees. In the same manner, I welcome all important dignitaries, traditional rulers, particularly the Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji (Dr.) Ibrahim Sulu Gambari, other first class traditional rulers, distinguished functionaries of government, the legislature and judiciary, security agencies, captains of industries, Vice Chancellors, Provosts, Rectors, heads of educational institutions and friends of Kwara State University to this important epoch making event.
Distinguished audience, about a year and some months ago, precisely the 1st of April, 2020, I was entrusted with the leadership of this great University – the Kwara State University, Malete, otherwise known as ‘The University for Community Development and Entrepreneurship’. It is with immense joy and a heart full of thanks that I stand before this August session to deliver my address as the Vice-Chancellor of this young but promising University.
Mr Visitor, Chancellor, Pro-Chancellor and all other distinguished personalities here present, I would not be doing justice to my feelings if I do not say by way of preface to my address, how grateful I am, that the Supreme Being; Almighty Allah SWT destined me to be here today to speak in my capacity as the second substantive Vice-Chancellor of Kwara State University despite the devastating effects of COVID-19 which is still ravaging many parts of the world, severe funding challenge and a recent health scare.
Today’s Convocation Ceremony is unique in many respects. Not only is it the first convocation since my assumption of office as Vice-Chancellor, it is also the first outing for our Chancellor who was installed as the third Chancellor of this University yesterday. It is equally, the first convocation for the Pro-Chancellor. It is therefore, not out of place to congratulate the Chancellor and the Pro-Chancellor for taking their eminent position in history with their first outing at this combined convocation.
Your Excellencies, distinguished audience, this gathering affords the opportunity to give account of the journey of the University in the past 20 months of my assumption of office and indeed, since the last convocation. It is an opportunity to highlight our achievements, assess our plans and strategies, and restate our determination and focus to achieve higher goals in repositioning this University, not only for greater educational service delivery, but to contribute significantly to the development of Nigeria and the world at large. As we look back over these past months, we cannot but give thanks to Almighty Allah for His abundant grace and for the progress we have attained so far, and to look forward to the future with greater faith and hope for regeneration.
Your Excellencies, today is the second day and grand finale of the 8th and 9th Convocation ceremony of our great university. Yesterday, 6,620 graduands were awarded First Degrees, with ninety-eight (98) of them in First Class division. At this ceremony today, we shall be awarding postgraduate degrees to three hundred and four (304) students for the 2019/2020 session and ninety six (96) in the 2020/2021 session. In all, sixty (60) Ph.D. Degrees will be awarded; forty (40) for the 2019/2020 session and twenty (20) for the 2020/2021 session. Details of the graduating students for postgraduate studies are as follows:
Statistics of Graduating Students – POSTGRADUATE 2019/2020
|M.Ed./ M.Sc. Ed||NIL||NIL||NIL||NIL||41||NIL||NIL||41|
Statistics of Graduating Students – POSTGRADUATE 2020/2021
|M.Ed./ M.Sc. Ed||NIL||NIL||NIL||NIL||16||NIL||NIL||16|
Importantly, seven (7) eminent Nigerians who have and are contributing tremendously to nation building shall be conferred honorary doctorate degrees. These Nigerians are: the First Lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari; Professor Ibrahim Agboola Gambari; Alhaji Muhammadu Indimi OFR; Dr. Johnson Bamidele Adewumi; Alhaji Kamoru Yusuf; Dr. Babatunde Jolayemi Omotowa and Alhaji Abdulsamad Rabiu.
The selection of these distinguished personalities was not a hard choice for us to make as a University. Each and every one of them represents values worthy of emulation; they epitomize the qualities we desire in our graduates. They represent excellence in their different fields and their contributions to the advancement of society are verifiable. For these reasons, we as a community of scholars make bold and proud to announce them as holders of our honorary doctorate degree. Kwara State University has chosen to confer upon each of them honorary doctorate degrees that reflect their contribution to the nation.
Nigeria’s First lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari, is a woman to be emulated. Her grace, comportment, and contributions as an advocate for women’s and children’s rights set her apart from other first ladies. In spite of her position, she is an ardent seeker of knowledge, a contributor to the advancement of education and a business person with an establishment in Nigeria who continues to improve on her skills. Kwara State University is conferring on her, an Honorary Doctorate Degree in Entrepreneurship.
Professor Ibrahim Agboola Gambari is our own in Kwara State and Kwara State University. He is the University’s pioneer Chancellor who is serving our country as Chief of Staff to the President. His contribution to KWASU, to Kwara State, to Nigeria and the world motivated us to confer upon him Kwara State University’s Doctor of Letters Degree, Honoris Causa.
Alhaji Muhammadu Indimi OFR is a frontline Oil and Gas mogul who has risen to the peak of that sector. He is a significant employer of labour, philanthropist and community developer. He is to be conferred with Kwara State University’s Honorary Doctorate Degree in Technology.
Dr. Johnson Bamidele Adewumi is KWASU’s 3rd Chancellor. As an engineer and community developer, Dr. Adewumi epitomises what we stand for as the University for Community Development and Entrepreneurship. He was conferred with Kwara State University’s Doctor of Technology degree Honoris Causa at the convocation ceremony for first degrees, yesterday.
Alhaji Kamoru Yusuf is one of the prominent sons of Kwara State. He, too, epitomises entrepreneurship and resilience. He is an employer of a significant number of people and his establishments continue to add value to our state and nation. He is a recipient of Kwara State University’s Doctor of Technology Degree, Honoris Causa.
Alhaji Abdulsamad Rabiu is another worthy Nigerian who has defied the challenges of the technological and business world to carve a niche for himself in the cement manufacturing sector. His company is a brand that is continentally relevant and is a large scale employer of labour. He is recipient of Kwara State University’s Honorary Doctor of Business Degree.
Dr. Babatunde Jolayemi Omotowa is another Oil and Gas executive who rose from humble backgrounds to significantly enviable heights in Nigeria and abroad. He is recipient of Kwara State University’s Honorary Doctor of Science Degree.
The conferment of KWASU’s honorary doctorate degree should not be taken with levity or trivialised. Conferring such degrees on individuals is an indication that we have admitted them into the annals of our history, as our alumni. Indeed, following the conferment of their degrees, they become alumni of Kwara State University. Like we admonish all our alumni, we expect them to bring honour to us and contribute to the growth and development of their alma mata. Kwara State University looks up to our distinguished alumni to make their impact felt in the institution; we desire to look around our campus and find their names boldly inscribed on infrastructure that will outlive them. We aspire that they will use their immense social network and net worth to facilitate the advancement of their new alma mata. These are some of what we expect from them.
Your Excellencies, it is the tradition at convocation ceremonies for the Vice-Chancellor to give account of his stewardship since the last convocation. Yesterday, I spoke about the efforts we have made to sustain the legacy of academic stability in the University, which has enabled us to graduate students on schedule. Your Excellencies, I must inform you that our University is among the few which did not cancel any academic session due to the COVID-19 pandemic that caused nationwide lockdown and disruption of academic calendar last year. The credit for this feat goes to our academic and non-teaching staff who continue to work very hard to keep the system running in spite of glaring challenges.
Your Excellencies, the University is blessed with highly talented, experienced and committed academic staff who have continued to give their best to the system. The unique human resource of this University is her greatest gift, which has enabled her to weather storms and overcome many teething challenges. The University emphasizes innovative teaching and quality mentoring of students. Not only has the University maintained a stable academic calendar, it has continued to soar in academic excellence. Most of the academic programmes of the University currently enjoy full accreditation. This feat is due to the dedication and sacrifice of the staff and the unwavering support of the state government, which has remained faithful to bailing us out during accreditation exercises. We count on this continued support in more ways than one, especially as we are more determined to move Kwara State University to enviable heights within the comity of universities.
Your Excellencies, distinguished guests, our university is a cynosure of all eyes and a reference as the fastest growing State University in Nigeria. Kwara State University is also reputed for strategically providing avenues for the production of human resources in critical areas of our nation’s needs. The University recently inducted the first and second batches of Medical Laboratory Scientists who graduated from KWASU’s B. MLS in 2019/2020 and 2020/2021 academic sessions respectively. This is a significant achievement because KWASU is the first tertiary institution in the whole of North Central Nigeria to mount the B.MLS programme and graduate sixty seven (67) Medical Lab. Scientists, thus contributing to solving the problem of shortage of qualified Medical Lab. Scientists in the country.
We are the first and probably the only university in Nigeria that trains students in Aeronautics and Astronautics Engineering. This is a crucial aspect of air transport engineering and technology which is capable of providing the much needed manpower to drive and reposition the aviation sector of Nigeria.
While the University is striving towards restoring accreditation status for the Aeronautics and Astronautics engineering programme, we seek greater support from the Kwara State government in this visionary move to contribute significantly to Nigeria’s air transport technology.
During the period under reference, eight programmes in the University earned full accreditation status. These are Accounting, Banking and Finance, Business Administration, Computer Science, English, Linguistics and African Languages, Performing Arts, and Microbiology. The Faculty of Law programme also successfully passed the resource verification by the Council of Legal Education. Nine other programmes went through resource verification by the National Universities Commission during the same period. They are B.Sc. Film Studies and Production; M.Sc. & Ph.D. Environmental Health Science; M.Eng. & Ph.D. Civil Engineering; M.Eng. & Ph.D. Agricultural and Bio Resources Engineering; and, M.Eng. & Ph.D. Material and Metallurgical Engineering.
In the effort to further expand the University’s academic programmes, 16 new programmes have been developed by the University and are awaiting resource verification by the NUC. These new programmes are:
B.Sc. Aquaculture and Fisheries Management
B.Ed. Educational Management
B.A. Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution
B.A. (Ed.) Arabic Language Education
B.A. (Ed.) Christian Studies Education
B.A. (Ed.) English Education
B.A. (Ed.) French Education
B.A. (Ed.) Islamic Studies Education
B.Sc. (Ed.) Agricultural Education
B.Sc. (Ed.) Biology Education
B.Sc. (Ed.) Chemistry Education
B.Sc. (Ed.) Computer Science Education
B.Sc. (Ed.) Mathematics Education
B.Sc. (Ed.) Physics Education
B.A. (Ed.) Yoruba Education
These proposed programmes have the combined capacity to generate the much needed human resources in the diverse areas of their focus, which will in turn drive the nation’s growth.
In terms of staff training and development, many of our academic staff won TETFund Scholaship to undergo Ph.D. programmes in universities of their choice across the globe while some others are waiting for the approval of their applications. Importantly too, in many of our academic departments, about 50% and in some cases up to 92% of the teaching staff are Ph.D. holders from different universities across the world. Several others are undergoing the Ph.D. programmes locally and internationally through TETFund sponsorship or self-funding.
Your Excellencies, as part of our commitment to an enviable town and gown relationship, the University has continued to make positive impact on the Malete community and beyond through provision of boreholes to solve water challenges in various communities. The University through its Centre for Sustainable Energy also installed solar-powered water pumps for rural communities around the University.
KWASU’s Centre for Community Development coordinates the University’s community outreach and all academic staff and many students engage in regular community outreach that are of significant benefit to different communities. Specifically, in August this year, students of the Mass Communication department undertook the construction and installation of four solar-powered streetlights for the Malete community. Our Top-up students also provided borehole for the community.
TECHNICAL, VOCATIONAL AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP STUDIES
Our Centre for Technical, Vocational, and Entrepreneurship Studies (CTVET) is first of its kind in any Nigerian university. It seeks ‘to produce a crop of successful entrepreneurs and leaders driven by intense commitment and determined perseverance, innovation, integrity and competitive desire to excel, by seeking opportunities and making a difference in the final outcomes of their ventures and lives in the global environment. To-date, the Centre has made tremendous impact in producing graduates with marketable skills who are self-reliant and job creators. It is important to note that the National Universities Commission has endorsed this innovative training for 21st century Nigerian students and many universities across Nigeria are imbibing this tradition pioneered by our University.
INTRA CAMPUS TRANSPORTATION
Findings reveal that the unregulated transport system within the school campus has aided the rise in antisocial behaviours and accidents amongst our students.
There are credible reports of some commercial transporters serving as couriers for the sale and distribution of illicit drugs on the campus. Also, there are frequent incidents of avoidable accidents on campus as a result of reckless driving by commercial drivers. However, in a bid to curb this menace, the University has forged partnership with a private investor on intra campus shuttle, which will take off in January, 2022. The proposed regulated transportation model, we believe will ensure safety of both students and staff on campus as there will be periodic sight and drug tests for concerned drivers.
Your Excellencies, Kwara State University is one of the most peaceful and stable universities in Nigeria. We have achieved industrial harmony and promoted the spirit of cooperation among the different unions in the University. Prior to my assumption of office as Vice-Chancellor, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) had parallel executives. Today, the union is united through our effort and a unified executive body of the union is in place. In addition, other unions such as the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), National Association of Academic Technologists (NAATS), and Non-Academic Staff Union of Education and Associated Institutions (NASU) are also functioning well. Our management maintains a very cordial relationship with the unions for the progress of our University.
Your Excellencies, the administration under my watch prioritizes staff welfare and ensures that salaries are paid as at when due. Staff receive their salaries latest on the 23rd of the month. In addition, staff promotion for 2020 and 2021 has been released. Between 2020 and 2021, 10 academic staff were promoted to professorial rank, while many other deserving academic and non-teaching staff of other ranks were also promoted. The number of professors in the university is now 37. This is a significant achievement considering the situation in many state-owned universities in Nigeria. We value our staff and we know the great contributions they are making to sustain the University. We are therefore, determined to ensure that all eligible and qualified staff earn their promotion as at when due.
In recognition of their competencies and high value, a number of our staff have been honoured with appointments at the state and national levels. Engr. Professor Abdul Ganiyu Funsho Alabi was appointed member NASENI Technical Board of Engineering Materials Development Institute, Akure. Engr. Professor Christopher Odetunde was appointed Vice-Chancellor, St. Augustine University, Ilara-Epe, Lagos State. Hon. Justice Kareem Adeyimika Adedokun of the Faculty of Law was appointed a Judge of Oyo State Judiciary and Professor Matthew Odedokun was appointed Chairman Governing Council, Emmanuel Alayande College of Education, Oyo. Furthermore, Yakub Omotosho Yakub Esq, was appointed Director- General/Chief Executive, Kwara State Bureau of Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises and Professor Moshood Mahmud Jimba, Chairman Kwara Board of Arabic Studies.
Your Excellencies, in order to meet our expanding teaching needs and increase our margin of excellence, we recognize the need for expanded and additional facilities. In view of this, we have continued to invest in infrastructure on our Campus. Some of our completed and on-going projects include:
Category A- Internally Generated Revenue Projects
Completion of University Fire Station (on-going)
Construction of Works Department Extension (on-going)
Completion of School of Pre-Degree Studies at Elemere (on-going)
Construction of Blocks of Lecture rooms, Offices and Car Park at KWASU International Conference Centre, Ilorin (on-going)
Installation of 10 kilowatt uninterrupted solar power system for KWASU clinic (Completed)
Rehabilitation and automation of KWASU campus solar streetlights (on-going)
Rehabilitation of 300 kilowatt TETFund/NEEDS assessment KWASU solar farm (Completed)
Construction of KWASU Art Garden (on-going)
Category B- Donor Agencies
Construction of 200 capacity Lecture Theatre for Faculty of Engineering (completed- TETFund)
Construction of Twin-Lecture Theatre (400 capacity) for Faculty of Humanities and Management (completed- TETFund)
Construction of Seminar and Training Building for Research Centre for Nigerian Languages (completed – TETFund)
Construction of lecture rooms and Library building for Research Centre for Nigerian Languages (completed – TETFund)
Construction of one storey Engineering Workshop for Faculty of Engineering and Technology (on-going- TETFund)
Construction of One –Storey Laboratory for Faculty of Pure and Applied Sciences (on-going- TETFund)
Procurement of various laboratory equipment for department of biochemistry, Faculty Of Pure And Applied Sciences (Completed – TETFund)
Procurement of agricultural engineering equipment for department of agricultural engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Technology (Completed – TETFund)
Procurement of Generating set for 200 capacity, Lecture Theatre and Engineering and Technology Workshop (Completed – TETFund)
Procurement of furniture for Faculty of Engineering and Technology, Faculty of Humanities & Management sciences, Faculty of Education, and Research Centre for Nigerian Languages (Completed – TETFund)
Procurement of Mass Communication Equipment for Department of Mass Communication, Faculty of Information and Communication Technology (Completed – TETFund)
Supply and Installation of Equipment for Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering, Physics and Material Sciences Department and Faculty of Agriculture and various equipment (On-going – TETFund)
Supply and Installation of Equipment for Medical Biochemistry and Pharmacology and Zoology Department and various equipment (On-going – TETFund)
Supply and Installation of Furniture (library) (Completed – TETFund)
Rehabilitation of Faculty of Information and Communication Technology (On-going – TETFund)
Landscaping of Faculty of Information and Communication Technology (Completed – TETFund)
Contract for International Computer Driving Licenses Training (Completed – TETFund)
Contract for International Computer Driving Licenses Training – Additional Training (Completed – TETFund)
The Website Remodelling and Restructuring (Completed – TETFund)
Supply, Installation and Commissioning of Solar Streetlights and Office Equipment (Completed – TETFund)
Construction of Central Research Laboratory Building and Equipment (on-going- Central Bank of Nigeria)
Installation of 100 Kilowatt solar powered panels (on-going- EU/Government of Lithuania)
Installation of 30 solar powered streetlights (Federal Ministry of Works, Abuja (Completed)
Category C- Private Sector Investments (BOT)
Construction of 1000 capacity CBT centre (on-going)
Construction of two 1000 capacity student hostels (on-going)
Category D- Kwara State Government Intervention
17 Million Naira Intervention fund for Resource Verification exercise for the Faculty of Law Degree Programme (Completed)
18 Million Naira Intervention fund towards E- Learning and Virtual Examination (Completed)
Your Excellencies, distinguished guests, let me, at this juncture, intimate you with some critical challenges we currently face as a University. Despite the modest achievements recorded by the University over the years, the challenges facing us are quite enormous and daunting! Even though the University compares well and competes favourably with some older universities in the country, the reality is that KWASU is still at its infancy. The increasing population of students and the lack of corresponding infrastructure to support their needs put us under undue and intense pressure especially during accreditation exercises.
In order to efficiently and effectively meet the mandates of teaching, research and community development services, a good university must not lack in crucial and critical areas of funding and infrastructural development including facilities and equipment. Thus permit me to highlight some of our areas of need for your favourable consideration.
Expansion of Shao-Malete road to a dual carriage status
The single lane road connecting Shao with Malete was built several years ago as a rural road. Back then Malete was just a small community with a small population with very low vehicular traffic on the road. However, the establishment of Kwara State University in the town has attracted increased human activities and movement on the road. Sir, you may wish to know that the students’ population that was less than 1000 at inception in 2009 has exploded to over 21,000 today. The congregation of this huge number of students in Malete has of necessity attracted increased businesses that have in turn swollen the population of the town and the communities along the road corridor. Majority of our staff also commute from Ilorin and environ on daily basis.
In view of the high vehicular traffic, the road has continued to deteriorate over the years. Maintenance expenses on our vehicles using this road have continued to escalate, causing more strain on our lean purse. Although temporary measures are frequently taken by the government to improve the condition of the road, this has barely solved the problem. We humbly appeal to the State Government to do a reconstruction and expansion of the road to dual carriage status as the existing single lane lacks the capacity to carry the heavy vehicular traffic generated by the exponential increase in population.
Need for more faculty and departmental buildings
The growing number of programmes being offered in the University necessitates the creation of more faculties and departments. Currently, new programmes are housed in existing faculties. However, it is important that new faculties and departments are started as soon as possible to host the new programmes in order to satisfy accreditation requirements. The proposed faculties are: (1) Faculty of Social Sciences; (2) Faculty of Management Sciences; (3) Faculty of Life Sciences; and (4) Faculty of Physical sciences.
We humbly appeal to the government and friends of the University to please come to our building needs in the areas of faculty and departmental buildings.
A major factor that fuels anti-social and immoral acts such as illicit use of drugs, cybercrimes and cultism in universities is the fact that majority of students live off campus. This act has denied today’s university student the culture of university life which would have been embedded in him or her. Such student neither goes through the university nor does the university go through him or her. The student only comes to school when lectures are scheduled and spends the major part of the university life outside the campus. Such student is thus exposed to the vagaries of life, prone to associating with antisocial elements and gets easily influenced. When students are not within university facilities, it is difficult for the authorities to exercise control or offer full-fledged guidance over them.
Currently, a large percentage of our students stay off-campus. As a responsible institution, we have embarked on a private sector initiative (BOT) to bring majority of our students on campus. The University has started the Smart City Student Hostel Project. The project consists of 10 mega hostels, each of which provides one thousand, one hundred and twenty (1,120) bed spaces. It is our belief that this project will go a long way in solving students’ accommodation problems and facilitating the inculcation of the fast eroding culture of university life in our students. We are therefore calling on private and corporate investors to key into this initiative that will enhance our drive towards producing the total person in our graduates. We also passionately seek the support of government and the NUC in the formulation of policies that will make it mandatory for all students in tertiary institutions in Nigeria to live on campus.
Intra campus road network
The ease of movement around a university and access to all functional parts is one of the criteria used in global ranking of universities. Given the growth in both infrastructure and population on the KWASU campus, the existing intra-campus roads are inadequate and limit access to many parts of the University. To achieve effective road network which will complement the immense investments in physical infrastructure, the University requires the State Government’s aid in the opening up of more roads within the campus.
The land mass ceded to the Kwara State University at its inception to host the main campus in Malete, Moro Local Government Area is currently being encroached upon by communities and individuals. This is a significant cause of concern for us as a University to protect the property of the government and to limit reasons for conflict. Concerted efforts to secure this land mass which was acquired for the inevitable expansion and other research needs of the University must be carried out as a matter of urgency. We recommend that the State Government swings into action by erecting perimeter fencing of the land belonging to the University to ward off the current threat. We equally recommend the constitution of a LAND REVIEW COMMITTEE to appropriately review all threats to the University’s lands and deploy the authority of the state to document and secure these lands.
As I have mentioned earlier, the presence of a vibrant and academically stable University such as KWASU has led to a geometric growth in population and other human activities in and around Malete, the host community. While this is one of the benefits of citing a University in a rural area, there is now greater need for more security presence for not only the university community, but the larger host communities. Currently, the host community has a Divisional Police Post. We seek the State and Federal Governments’ assistance to increase number of officers and men attached to this division and establish other paramilitary security posts to Malete. This will provide more security of lives and property in and around the University and Malete communities.
College of Medicine
One of Kwara State University’s goals is to contribute to the area of healthcare, especially providing quality personnel for our hospitals. This prompted the University to set up a committee to work out modalities for the take-off of the College of Medicine for the institution. To assist in the realisation of this goal, we seek private support in the construction of the College of Medicine building. This is a key need for the successful take-off of the college.
Centre for Distance learning and E- learning Education
The impact of the novel corona virus pandemic upon all spheres of human endeavour brought to the fore the importance of alternative modes of doing things, especially in the education sector. Virtual learning in a nation like Nigeria is the way to go as we need to continually produce manpower that will drive the nation’s socio-economic and political growth. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, KWASU had the foresight to establish the Centre for Distance Learning and E-learning Education. This centre was able to facilitate continuation of academic activities of the university online while the pandemic held the world to a lockdown. The realities of today’s world necessitates that this centre be well positioned to enhance KWASU’s goal of producing the total human regardless of distance or other prevailing challenges limiting contact, like COVID-19. Our Centre for Distance Learning and E-learning Education is in need of more up-to-date equipment and bigger building infrastructure to be able to render virtual education to an even larger number of students. KWASU seeks private investors and donors in this regard.
Since inception in 2009, Kwara State University’s health centre has been at its best, providing quality medical, health and wellness services to the university and Malete community and environs. In view of our growth and corresponding needs, we seek private assistance in the construction and equipping of a standard clinic that will be able to cater for the medical and wellness needs of the University and Malete community and environs. The current health facility is unable to fully render its service to the teeming number of students, staff and members of the Malete community. A standard clinic, complete with structure and equipment will go a great way in improving the provision of health care to the University Community. Private donors are needed to achieve this aim.
3000 capacity University Amphitheatre with basement halls
Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, you will agree with me that a University with over twenty thousand student capacity requires infrastructure that can accommodate a sizable number of persons at once during special ceremonies such as this convocation ceremony and other large scale functions of the university. A three thousand capacity University Amphitheatre is our target. We envisage a structure that will include basement halls to serve diverse needs of the end-users of the amphitheatre. This is why we call on private individuals to come to our assistance with the construction of this 3000 capacity amphitheatre with basement halls for the use of the university community.
Standard sports complex
Given the fact that universities are hubs of youth activities and population, it is necessary and beneficial to have sporting facilities that will further engage them to the benefit of both mind and body. KWASU requires a standard Sports complex to serve the growing sporting needs of our community. Private individuals are encouraged to facilitate the provision of a standard sports complex.
Your Excellencies, prior to my appointment as Vice Chancellor, the University was run with self-generated funds and loans from banks. However, we have tried to be very prudent in our expenditures. We have also refrained from borrowing and are trying to offset inherited debts accrued from the payment of salaries and other operating costs.
Your Excellencies, I must state that we have designed several fiscal strategies to improve our Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) with a view to achieving financial security. However, as they say, one hand cannot comfortably lift a heavy load. It has not been easy for us. The University has continued to grow and there is enormous pressure on the municipal facilities and infrastructure.
Your Excellencies, as a community of intellectuals and scholars, we are aware that globally, funds are dwindling and priorities must be identified. We earnestly seek the cooperation of the state government in this wise. We believe that the service we render in Kwara State University is one that should be prioritised. The future of our state and nation is important and producing men and women capable of continuing and advancing our values and our society is fundamental to securing that future. This is why we respectfully appeal to our proprietor, the Kwara State Government to immediately restore our monthly subvention and not leave us to continue to struggle in providing such a crucial service to humanity. We in return pledge even more of our commitment to teaching, researching to solve societal challenges and contributing to the development of the state.
We also seek collaborations from the private sector including industries, organizations, and individuals to assist in lightening our burden by partnering with us and investing in our vision. We count on the support of all well-meaning individuals and philanthropists to complement the efforts of the state government and the modest resources we generate internally. The university will appreciate endowment of any form, which can help the institution and properly position it for quality educational service delivery.
Our determination is as strong as ever to continue to make KWASU a positive reference point among universities worldwide. I am confident that with the support of those who share our dream and vision, we shall get there.
Your Excellencies, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, let me again, at this juncture, offer appreciation. First, I must thank Almighty Allah – our Nourisher and Sustainer – who has made this day possible, without whose help, resolutions are vain, and without whose blessings, nothing is ever possible. We thank Him for bringing us this far and pray that He will lead us to an even more successful destination. I wish to convey our gratitude to Your Excellencies and other distinguished guests for standing by us. Thank you all for the positive contributions towards making not just today’s event a success, but for being with us in the journey to world-class status. I also thank and congratulate the awardees for accepting to be honoured with the Honorary Degrees of this University. There is no doubt that their esteemed presence has enriched this event.
I would also like to also express our profound gratitude to all our benefactors, friends of the university and donor agencies especially, the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) for their interventions and generous support, which has boosted the academic and infrastructural base of this University.
Finally I will like to express my heartfelt appreciation to all who have made today a memorable one for the University. In particular, I appreciate the students and staff of the University. I thank you all for your presence and patience. I solicit your continued cooperation as we continue our journey towards raising the banner of KWASU to loftier heights. I wish us all journey mercies as we return to our respective destinations.
Thank you and God bless.
Professor Muhammed Mustapha Akanbi SAN
Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive
Kwara State University, Malete
Saturday, December 11, 2021