The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali (OON), has stressed the importance of open and distance learning centres in widening access to university education and satisfying social responsibilities to the community as well as being a major source of internally generated revenue for higher institutions in the country.

Prof. Ambali made this observation penultimate Tuesday (July 25, 2017) while declaring open a two-day workshop organised by the Centre for Open and Distance Learning (CODL), University of Ilorin, in conjunction with the Centre for Research Development and In-House Training (CREDIT) for the staff of CODL as well as the academic staff of the Department of Computer Science, Faculty of Communication and Information Sciences, University of Ilorin.

The Vice-Chancellor, who was represented by the Deputy Vice –Chancellor (Research, Technology and Innovation), Prof. Gabriel Olatunji, noted that the Centre could be a main contributor to the University's internally generated revenue like its counterparts like the Institute of Education and the Ilorin Business School.

He assured the Centre of the management's readiness to adequately fund its proper take-off but that this good intention had been hampered by the general poor economic condition of the country, which equally affected the University system.

Prof. Ambali, however, promised that the management would do its best to ensure that the Centre becomes financially buoyant, especially with the expected collaboration with the Institute of Education.

In her own remarks, the Chairperson of the Board of the Open and Distance Learning Centre, who is also the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Prof. Ijaiya, stressed the importance of staff training and pointed out that the University of Ilorin had been committed to the training of her staff over the years.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Director of CODL, Prof. Ayodele Fajonyomi, stated that the workshop, the second of its kind in the life of the Centre, was orgarnised to acquaint new staff of the Centre and the staff of the collaborating Department of Computer Science with the required knowledge and skill in open and distance learning delivery system.

The Director of the General Studies Division, University of Ilorin, Prof. Wahab Egbewole, has been appointed the Coordinator, Collaborative Research Network 47 (CRN47) of the Law and Society Association.

The appointment, which was made at the Society's International Conference held in Mexico between June 18 and June 23, 2017, is for three years.

A statement made available to Unilorin Bulletin disclosed that with the appointment, the Professor of Jurisprudence and International Law has the responsibility of coordinating and organising the CRN's activities for 2018, 2019 and 2020.

The Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) of the University of Ilorin, Prof. (Mrs.) N.Y.S. Ijaiya, has urged Information and Communication Technology (ICT) officers in the University to be more alive to their responsibilities.

Prof. Ijaiya stated this recently (July 19, 2017) while declaring open a training workshop for the Information and Communication Technology officers of the Computer Services and Information Technology (COMSIT) Centre at the Old Senate Chamber.

Describing the ICT officers as the think-thank of the University, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, who is also the Chairman, COMSIT Board, stressed that it is important for every Information Technology (I. T.) personnel to know everything about their job.

She said, “When you get to your job it is also important you are trained and that explains the reason for the training and retraining we see. That is what the Vice- Chancellor has been doing since he came on board and it has been fruitful. I do hope you will make the maximum use of the knowledge”.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Director of CREDIT, Prof. B. S. Alabi, appreciated the efforts of the University management for the assistance in putting the training together for the benefits of the COMSIT personnel.

The Dean of the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Ilorin, Prof. Abdulkareem Agunu, has been conferred with a Merit Award Winner (MAW) by the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN), Kwara State Branch.

The award presentation which took place penultimate Tuesday (July 26, 2017) at the Kwara Hotel, Ilorin, was part of the activities marking the 2017 PSN Week and Award.

Other recipients of the MAW award, at the well attended event, included the Director of Pharmaceutical Services, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH), Pharmacist Ramon Afolabi; Pharmacist Ibrahim Bello of UITH; Pharmacist Ole Joseph also of the UITH and three others.

Speaking with Unilorin Bulletin shortly after the conferment of the prestigious award on him, Prof. Agunu expressed joy over his choice as one of the recipients of the award, saying that the award shows that his contributions to pharmacy as a profession and humanity in general are being felt and recognized.

He pledged that the recognition would further encourage him to intensify efforts on his contributions towards the progress and development of the Society.

Earlier in his address, the National President of PSN, Pharmacist Ahmed Yakassai, who was represented by Pharmacist Lanre Alege, said that the theme of the event could not have come at a better time than now when Nigerians are striving to cope with economic downtown while the provision of quality health cannot be compromised.

The Chairman of the occasion, Alhaji Ahmed Raji, who is the Chairman of Kwara State Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (KWACCIMA), described recession as a good avenue for people to think outside the box and be more creative and innovative.

Dignitaries on the occasion included the Kwara State Commissioner for Health, Alhaji Atolagbe Alege; the CEO of Victory Drug, Lagos, Pharmacist Folasade O. Lawal who was the keynote speaker; staff of Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Ilorin, among others.

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali (OON), has commended the Unilorin Press for its wonderful performance and for justifying the challenge given to it by the University Governing Council.

Prof. Ambali, who gave the commendation last Monday (July 31, 2017) when the Board members of the Unilorin Press visited him in his office, said that because the Press has performed wonderfully well, the University will intensify its effort in providing a befitting printing press and publishing house with modern equipment at the permanent site.

The Vice-Chancellor noted that the Council made the right decision by establishing and engaging the Unilorin Press, saying, “You have made us proud by being accountable, reasonable and pragmatic and we have not had any cause to regret patronising you. Do not relent but continue to work harder and it will be communicated to the Council that you are performing well.”

Prof. Ambali also disclosed that work will soon start on the building of the institution's proposed Radio/Television complex, saying that construction will commence as soon as the tender is approved.

Earlier in his remarks, the Chairman of Unilorin Press Board, Prof. A. O. Mahmoud, expressed appreciation to the University management and the Vice-Chancellor for the support they have been given to the Press, adding that the establishment of a modern printing press and publishing house for the Press will “tremendously boost our service, educational, research, as well as town and gown roles.”

Apart from being the official printer of the University, the Chairman noted that the Unilorin Press also serves as an educational and research organ for the institution's Mass Communication Department, the Technical and Entrepreneurship Centre and a vocational training centre for the National Directorate of Employment.

Prof. Mahmoud disclosed that as a result of the University's patronage, the Press' turnover, “which was about N27, 714, 380 in 2013 had more than doubled to N57,151, 810 in 2016”, stressing that the feat was achieved because of the institution's leadership by example style of exclusively giving jobs to the Unilorin Press in recognition of its statutory role as the University's official printer.

He then appreciated the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Management Services), Prof. A. Y. AbdulKareem, for his effort in overseeing the affairs of the press.

Other members of the Board include Mrs. Nihinlola Abimbola, Mr. M. A. Alfanla, Prof. S.O. Malomo, Prof. A. O. Omotosho, Prof. K. Joseph, Prof. L. A. Yahaya, Dr. J.O. Fayeye, Alhaji Liadi Tella, Mr. F. Ogunyinka and Mr. Leye Oluwole (Secretary).

Also present during the visit were the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Prof. N.Y.S. Ijaiya; the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Management Services), Prof. A.Y. Abdulkareem; the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research, Technology and Innovation, Prof. G. A. Olatunji; the Deputy Registrar, Dr. A. Adisa, who represented the Registrar; the University Librarian, Dr J.O. Omoniyi; the Deputy Director, Corporate Affairs, Mr. Kunle Akogun, and the Principal Assistant Registrar in the Vice-Chancellor’s Office, Mr. A. Sayuti.

…as Adedimeji becomes Fellow of SPSP

The Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Society for Peace Studies and Practice (SPSP), Prof. Isaac Olawale Albert, has lauded the Centre for Peace and Strategic Studies (CPSS), University of Ilorin, on the giant strides the Centre has been making in recent years.

Prof. Albert, who is also the Director of the Institute for Peace and Strategic Studies (IPSS), University of Ibadan, gave this commendation penultimate Monday (July 24, 2017) at Babcock University, Ilisan-Remo, Ogun State, during the investiture of the Director of CPSS, Dr Mahfouz Adedimeji, as a Fellow of the Society.

According to Prof. Albert, the University of Ilorin did well by investing in peace studies and the current Director of the Centre has contributed significantly to what he met on ground to the extent that he keeps on hearing positive developments about the Centre which make him proud.

The Professor of International History and Peace Studies, who is also the pioneer Director of the CPSS, University Ilorin, noted that though he would not say that the Centre is better than the Institute in Ibadan due to the achievements recorded, he would say that the CPSS is doing very well.

Prof. Albert therefore urged other similar Centres and Institutes of peace and related studies to take a cue from the example laid by the University of Ilorin by forging partnerships and deepening collaboration with stakeholders in security establishments so that peace and security would be achieved in the country ultimately.

He noted that the conferment of the prestigious Fellowship and highest recognition of the Society on Dr. Adedimeji was in acknowledgement of his vast contributions to the uplift of peace studies as well as peace and security in Nigeria. He urged the new Fellow not to rest on his oars but work harder as an ambassador of the Society.

In his goodwill message delivered on the occasion, which coincided with the opening ceremony of the 11th annual international conference of the Society, Dr. Adedimeji expressed the gratitude of the University of Ilorin to the SPSP not only for partnering the University in establishing the Centre but for also advancing peace, security and harmonious co-existence in Nigeria and Africa.

Dr. Adedimeji noted that the security challenges that Nigeria is facing could be overcome with collaboration among various stakeholders along uprightness and righteousness among individuals in the country as the world is made up of individuals. He buttressed his point saying that a former President of India, Dr A. P. J. Abdulkalam said, “Where there is righteousness in the heart, there is beauty in the character; when there is beauty in the character, there is harmony in the home; where there is harmony in the home, there is order in the nation; where there is order in the nation, there is peace in the world.”

Also admitted into the Fellowship of SPSP on the occasion were the Vice-Chancellor of Babcock University, Prof. Ademola Tayo; a former Chief of Staff to the President of Nigeria, Gen. Jones Arogbofa (rtd.), the  President of the SPSP, Dr Nathaniel Danjibo; and a Professor of Counseling and Criminal Justice Studies at the University of Ibadan, Oyesoji Aremu, among others.

The highlights of the occasion included the presentation of lead papers by Prof. Albert, Dr Adedimeji and Prof. Aremu. While Prof. Albert's presentation was "What Collaboration Methods for Sustainable  Peace and Security in Nigeria?" both Dr Adedimeji and Prof. Aremu respectively focused on "Cultural Security as the Software of Sustainable Development in Nigeria" and "Of Peace Psychology and Emotional Intelligence: Promoting Peace in a Security Threatened Distraught Society.”

As part of the efforts to ensure development in Igbominaland, a Professor of Science Education at the University of Ilorin, Esther Omosewo, has stressed the need for unity among the indigenes, saying that no ethnic group can progress without it.

Prof Omosewo stated this recently (July 15, 2017) while delivering a lecture, entitled “A Proposal for Unity among Igbomina People for Global Development”, at the Igbomina Day celebration organised by the National Association of Igbomina Students, University of Ilorin Chapter.

The Guest Speaker observed that although “the Igbominas are renowned merchants well known for long distance trading which account for their wide spread across Yoruba land”, land and chieftaincy disputes have been the major issues hindering the development of their area and that is why “government impact is not felt in Igbomina land.”

Proffering the way forward for development in the area, Prof. Omosewo urged all Igbomina indigenes in government to eschew being antagonists to the progress of those they are not in good terms with, adding that “efforts should be made to organise holiday coaching for secondary school students in each town and also indigenes of Igbomina should be called to speak on important issues.”

On his part, the Staff Adviser of the Igbomina Students Association,  Dr. T. S. Arinde of the Department of Performing Arts, University of Ilorin, urged members of the Association to remain focused and optimistic about Igbomina land, saying, “when there is synergy among people, development will not be far-fatched”.