Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State on Wednesday inaugurated a committee for the establishment of a state-owned university in Kogi West.
Chaired by Professor Olu Obafemi Nnom, an esteemed academician and Fellow of the Nigerian Academy of Letters, the committee has 17 distinguished professors as members.
The lineup, as announced by the governor, comprises renowned professors who bring diverse expertise and experience to the table in the administration’s efforts at enhancing quality education within the state.
Notable members include Professor Abayomi Oloruntoba, Professor Kehinde Imisi Eniola, Professor Sunmola Afolabi, Professor Godwin Tunde Arosayin, Professor Gabriel Kolade Olorunleke, Professor Joseph Olorunju Omolehin, Professor Kingsley Ologe, Professor Sumaila Abdulganiyu, Professor Abiodun Adeniyi, Professor Rotimi Ajayi, Professor Yomi Monday Ayesimi, Professor Suleiman Omeiza Eku Sadiku, Professor Adams Oyuoze Umoru Onuka, Professor Igonoh Joshua A., Professor Mohammed Bello Yunusa, and Professor Hadiza Aguye, who will serve as the committee’s Secretary.
To ensure a comprehensive and coordinated approach, the committee includes several key government officials.
The officials are the Kogi State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mohammed Sani Ibrahim, SAN; Secretary to the Government of Kogi State, Folashade Arike Ayoade, PhD; Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Hon. Wemi Jones; Commissioner for Finance, Budget and Economic Planning, Hon. Asiwaju Idris Asiru; Commissioner for Works and Urban Development, Hon. Bako Samson; and Auditor-General, Hon. Yusuf Okala.
Members of the committee have been assigned a clear set of terms of reference, which includes determining the nature of the university to be established, be it specialised or conventional, and proposing an appropriate name for the institution.
Furthermore, they are responsible for preparing the necessary academic brief, university law, and university master plan to be presented to the National Universities Commission (NUC) for recognition and approval.
The committee will also identify an ideal location and a suitable site to ensure the immediate commencement of academic activities. In terms of sustainability, the committee will explore realistic and sustainable funding sources.
Additionally, any other activities required for the university’s prompt establishment fall within the committee’s purview.
Governor Bello stressed the importance of involving individuals who can contribute value to the committee’s work and activities.
He indicated that the committee might have the authority to co-opt other individuals, both Kogites and non-Kogites, to provide their expertise in establishing the university.
The committee has been given a timeframe of six weeks from the date of inauguration to submit its reports, underscoring Governor Bello’s commitment to a swift and efficient process in establishing the state-owned university.
The establishment of a state-owned university in Kogi West represents a significant milestone for Governor Yahaya Bello’s administration.
It highlights his dedication to expanding educational opportunities and providing quality higher education to the people of Kogi State.
With a committee consisting of eminent academics and government officials, the future university is poised to become a centre of excellence and contribute to the overall development of the state’s educational landscape.
In his remarks, Professor Olu Obafemi Nnom, the chairman of the committee, expressed the committee’s commitment to diligently fulfilling the dreams of the governor and the people of Okunland.
He commended Governor Bello for his dedication to equality, fairness, and inclusive governance while highlighting the long-standing desire of the Okun people for a university, spanning several decades.
He emphasized that the establishment of the University in Okunland by Bello’s administration was a significant and enduring gesture that would be remembered by the people for years to come.