FUNAI INSTALLS CHANCELLOR, MATRICULATES NEW STUDENTS
The installation ceremony which was performed by the representative of President Muhammad Buhari, Professor Akaneren Essien also featured the 4th matriculation ceremony of the new intakes and a Festschrift in honour of the Pioneer Vice Chancellor, Distinguished Professor O. Ibidapo-Obe whose five-year tenure ends next month.
Oba Gbadebo in his acceptance speech, thanked the President for finding him worthy of the office and promised to use his network of connections to advance the cause of the young University.
The traditional ruler expressed satisfaction with the rapid growth of the University under the leadership of Distinguished Professor Ibidapo-Obe and counselled the students to remain focused, disciplined, obedient and dedicated to their studies in order to reach the desired height in the society.
Oba Gbadebo expressed satisfaction with the fast pace of growth of FUNAI when compared to its contemporaries and attributed it to the doggedness of the Vice Chancellor and the University authorities in the discharge of their responsibilities and the quality of staff they have recruited to help them in achieving the vision of the University.
Turning to the matriculating students, the Chancellor charged them “to shun social vices and be law-abiding and serious-minded in your studies, because those who do not read are to be more pitied than those who cannot read. Where you are today and where you will be in the next 25 years is directly proportional to your reading habits, the relationship you cultivate with others and your closeness to God, he further remarked.
In a goodwill message, the Governor of Ebonyi State, Chief David Umahi, congratulated the Chancellor on his inauguration and expressed the hope that both FUNAI and Ebonyi State would benefit from his rich background.
The Governor used the occasion to assure the University community that this administration would take care of infrastructural facilities , adding that the road leading to the University was under construction while the Oferekpe Mega water scheme would be stepped down for their use.
In his address, the Vice Chancellor, Distinguished Professor Ibidapo-Obe, noted that the choice of the Chancellor was a wise one, as according to him, “FUNAI needs such a man with towering credentials and intimidating presence. He is indeed a foremost royal father, a man of impeccable credentials well versed in governance, entrepreneurship inter-personal relationship, and diplomatic meandering; all key qualities vital to achieving more success for FUNAI.”
Distinguished Professor Ibidapo-Obe maintained that as a retired Military Officer who served the Late General Tunde Idiagbo as Chief of Staff, “he would deploy these attributes and his wealth of experience, local, national and international connections and linkages in advancing the course of our University FUNAI.”
The Chancellor was later robed in the University’s regalia and presented with a copy of the laws establishing the institution.
Addressing the 1,098 matriculating students, the Vice Chancellor charged them to obey the school rules and regulation, warning that “FUNAI has no room for cultism, examination malpractice, drug abuse, sex-for, or money-for-marks, indecent dressing, rape and other forms of social vices” as any student caught in the act would be suspended, expelled or rusticated.
He said the addition of new programmes and faculties was to create room for more Nigerians to benefit from tertiary education as it has increased the number of admitted students.
On accommodation challenges facing the University, he advised the students to be patient as the new 500-bed male hostel and lecture halls were nearing completion, adding that management remained committed to students’ welfare by putting things in place to make sure their stay on campus was comfortable.