The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali (OON), has identified academic excellence, stability of academic calendar, and unbroken campus peace as the key attributes that make the University the toast of admission seekers and the most admired among the 147 universities in the country.
Prof. Ambali disclosed this last Tuesday (June 16, 2015) at the swearing-in of members of the newly elected Students’ Union Central Executive Council (CEC) for the coming 2015/2016 academic session, headed by its President, Idris Alao.
In his address, entitled “Memorable Day”, Prof Ambali, who was represented by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) Prof. (Mrs.) N. Y. S. Ijaiya, enjoined all students to contribute their quota to the sustenance of the identified qualities.
The Vice-Chancellor told the student leaders, “Your mandate is to promote the good image of the University both nationally and internationally such that the University will continue to be better by far and best by standard”.
Prof. Ambali then rolled out figures of the 2015 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME) conducted earlier this year to stress his point that “your university is the number one in many areas”.
Quoting a document released by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), entitled “The Statistics of Choice of Institutions”, the Vice-Chancellor said, “Out of the 1.4million candidates that sat for the examination, 107,491 students (representing 7.7%) picked the University of Ilorin to lead 146 other universities in Nigeria as against 71, 491 candidates, that is 5.1%, for the University of Benin, which came second and 70,609 or (5%) candidates for Nnamdi Azikiwe University, which came third”.
Prof. Ambali said, “Older universities like the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, is fourth with 66,791 (4.8%) candidates; the University of Lagos is fifth with 62,473 (4.4%) candidates, Ahmadu Bello University is sixth with 60,254 (4.3%) candidates while the University of Ibadan has 47,501 candidates, representing 3.4% to come seventh”.
The Vice-Chancellor, therefore, enlisted the support of the Students’ Union leaders in the campaign for the values, which the University hold dear, which include dress codes, respect for elders, respect for visitors, humility, etc.
“We have zero tolerance for corruption”, Prof. Ambali said, adding, “We are amazed about some cases of stealing among students particularly of handsets and ladies’ bags. If anyone is caught, it is expulsion”. He, therefore, told the new Union leaders to sensitise the rest of the student community against petty crimes.
Prof Ambali then thanked the outgoing student executive committee members led by Yakub Ishowo, who was rated number two among all Students’ Union Presidents in the country at the 2015 Students Leadership Development Tournament (SLEDT), saying, “by all standards you have done well”.
“Accept my hearty congratulations on a successful completion of your tenure during which you contributed to the academic excellence as well as to the sustenance of the peaceful and harmonious culture in our University”, he told the immediate past Students’ Union President.
In his own address, entitled “Brace Up for Positive Change”, the newly sworn-in President of the Students’ Union, Comrade Alao Idris, stressed the need to further consolidate on the reigning peaceful atmosphere on campus, saying that “peace is the foundation upon which development of this Citadel of Learning is built”.
According to him, the feats of his predecessors in office and that of successive administrations of the University were made possible through peace and are being sustained by the dynamic leadership of Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali.
Quoting from Prof. Ambali’s speech at a recent public lecture, Idris said, “The University of Ilorin occupies the position it occupies in the Nigerian University System today as a result of peace”.
Recalling the central message of his campaign, “Positive Change”, the student leader said, “The vision to pursue positive change is inspired by the message of change and hope personified by President Muhammad Buhari”.
He told his colleagues, “You will agree with me that like Buhari, yours sincerely contested election more than once to win”, adding, “I must also reveal that Buhari’s doggedness, resilience and belief in his dream was a strong motivating factor for me to contest for the Office of the Students’ Union President again. As a Buharist, this was made possible by my love and belief in the concept of Buharism”.
Idris promised to model his administration after President Buhari, who, according to him, remains untainted by corruption.
Among the dignitaries at the swearing-in ceremony were the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Management Services), Prof. Yisa Fakunle; the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research, Technology and Innovation), Prof. G. A. Olatunji; the Registrar, represented by the Deputy Registrar (Academic Support Services), Mrs. R. A. Okojie; the Bursar, Mr. Saka Abiodun Yusuf; the Librarian, Dr. Joseph Omoniyi; the Dean, Student Affairs, Prof, O. A. Omotesho; the Director of Legal Unit, Mr. Dare Akanbi, and the Deputy Director, Corporate Affairs, Mr. Kunle Akogun.