POMP AS VC CELEBRATES ONE YEAR IN OFFICE
Amidst pomp and pageantry, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Calabar, Prof. Florence Obi celebrated one-year in office as the first Female and 11th Vice Chancellor of the institution.
The Colourful event which was held at the Institution’s International Conference Centre attracted students and Staff as well as other members of Congregation working outside the university environment.
Speaking at the Congregation event, the Vice Chancellor thanked God for an eventful one-year in office, saying despite the multifarious challenges confronting the current administration, she remains undeterred and committed towards changing the narrative by enthroning a culture of excellence and effective service delivery in all segments of the University.
The University helmsmen said the future is indeed very bright for the institution as she is poised to take the citadel of learning to an unprecedented level.
Her words, ‘’ The future is indeed bright for the University because there are successes in the first year in office which presage greater achievements in the years ahead and further illuminate the prospects of a greater Unical.
‘’ The horizon is brighter, the waters getting clearer, and good men and women are ready for the sacrifices the sacrifices that ultimate success demands as the sun shines on this administration’’
While reeling-out the landmark achievements recorded by the current administration for the period under review, the varsity administrator said, when she mounted the saddle, the first major intervention was the rehabilitation of hostels that were destroyed in the wake of the #Endsars protest in October 2020.
According to her, the rehabilitation of the hostels was carried out before resumption of academic activities for continuation of the 2019/2020 session, adding that, to demonstrate the determination to address students’ welfare, the rehabilitation was executed at a time that the University was on its knees financially on the account of the protracted strike action and Covid-19 lockdown.
The Vice Chancellor said, in her efforts to meet the National University Commission (NUC) 30 percent accommodation criteria for students, she equipped the new Female ‘Special’ Hostel with adequate facilities.
Prof. Obi said, on assumption of office, the current administration has been able to manage the Covid-19 pandemic, adding that, a team of very committed men and women was set up as Unical Covid-19 team in this regard.
To deepen the fight against the ravaging pandemic, she said the University installed essential Covid-19 sanitizing equipment, including entry and exit tunnels.
She said in line with the administration’s drive for academic excellence, Examination Reforms and Quality Assurance committees were put in place to improve on examination administration and handling.
According to her, students’ welfare remains a cardinal vision of her administration, a cogent reason, her administration promptly entered a Memorandum of Understanding with a Health Management organization (HMO) for the operation of the Tertiary Institution Social Health Insurance Programme which affords student-enrollees the opportunity of receiving medical treatment up to tertiary level.
The First Female Vice Chancellor said the current administration has also blazed the trail in infrastructural development through massive construction of lecture pavilions to provide a conducive environment for learning.
She said her administration has brought a breath of fresh air in a previously stuffy and tensed environment, saying her office has become accessible for both staff and students.
The University helmsman said the successes recorded in the first one year did not come without stress and sacrifices, adding that, ‘’ these could not have been possible without the cooperation of the University Senate, Staff and Students’’.
While thanking the University community for their unalloyed support, encouragement and kind wishes, she appreciated Principal Officers for giving their best in the service of the University.
Prof. Obi, however, expressed optimism that many more successes will be recorded as the current administration will not rest on its oars in the determination to propel the institution to greater heights.
The Deputy Vice Chancellor Administration, Prof. Michael Okom, in his goodwill message, commended the Vice Chancellor for giving account of her stewardship, stressing that, it speaks volume of her determination to achieve greater things for the institution.
He said it has been ‘glorious and rewarding’ working with her, even as he enjoined everyone to join hands with her to build the University of our dreams.
In the same vein, Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic, Prof. Angela Oyo-Ita, described the Vice Chancellor as a ‘woman of faith, maintaining that, she feels highly privileged for the opportunity God gave her to work with the Vice Chancellor.
In her words, ‘’ God smiled on us as an institution on December 1, 2020, when he gave us an achiever and a pragmatic leader.
‘’She is focused and determined. She does not allow challenges to stop her because she sees every barrier as an opportunity to excel.
‘’ God has blessed us with Prof. Florence Obi. What we have seen in the first year is a child’s play, it is the beginning of greater things to come’’
The well-attended occasion featured a documentary on the giant strides of the Vice Chancellor and goodwill messages from members of the University community.
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