The newly inaugurated Vice-Chancellor of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Adebayo Simeon Bamire has revealed how he would transform the institution and make it more globally competitive and acceptable.
He also urged undergraduates whose academic pursuits had been truncated by the ongoing strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities not to stay idle at their various homes.
He spoke during during his inauguration by the university Pro-Chancellor, Owelle Oscar Udoji, as the 12th substantive Vice-Chancellor of OAU on Tuesday, at the Oduduwa Hall of the university
DAILY GIST reported that Bamire assumed office as the 12th substantive vice chancellor of the university on June 7th after the tenure of Prof. Egyitope Ogunbodede.
Bamire assured that he would improve the university’s internally generated revenue, take advantage of abundance of land in the school to improve learning and research
According to him, a Professor of Agricultural Economics, students should seize the opportunity of their lecturers’ industrial action to learn skills that would add values to their lives, while they hope to resume soon after ongoing negotiation between ASUU and the Federal Government becomes fruitful.
To achieve his vision, Bamire sued for industrial harmony among academic and non-academic staff of the university. Specifically, he called on factional unions of ASUU in the university to unite and work together as a body.
He said, “I love peace, just like my name implies. I always love to make friends because I find very difficult to move forward in the midst of rancour. That’s why I am always appealing to our union in good shape to come together so that we will be able to work together as one because the house divided against itself will not stand.
“My predecessor has done so many things but there is always a room for improvement and incidentally, the rooms are so large this time around because of the inadequacy of funds. But by God’s grace, we are going to enhance our internally generated revenue drive in such a way as to ensure that we will support the government funding opportunities. We will also make sure that we involve all stakeholders outside, collaborators from various realms, philanthropists, various companies, private sectors, government and in all areas.
“You know I am in the faculty of agriculture, particularly from the department of Agricultural Economics, we have land resources here. We will make use of the land resources to enhance and promote a lot of things aside form generating income. It will be like a knowledge base for our students as we will be able to bring up formation enterprises within the university sector. And we will do a PPP arrangement and also engage developers in various activities in the university sector.
“So, by this, we will have a transformation in it’s entirety. We will be dealing with companies and we shall not be buying items on retail basis. We will buy items from the source, the manufacturers themselves so as to be able to generate a lot to move the university forward academically.
“I have an advantage because most of the friends of the immediate Vice Chancellor are also my friends and I also have mine, so I will combine the two in other to move the university forward.”
On the way forward to the current impasse between ASUU and FG, he said: “the solution to ASUU challenges is just one. ASUU should be given the opportunity to enhance the facilities within the system and in doing this, requires that adequate funds must be provided to support education.
“To students at home, we are hopeful that ASUU is still negotiating and I believe that there is nothing that goes out of dialogue. I believe that at the end of the day, it will come out well. Students should try as much as possible to be patients but at the same time, try to learn skills. There are so many skills online that they can learn from. I have some students that have been to grow because of this. Data analysis, leadership skills, and adding values. Students are not supposed to come back to the university remaining thesame. They will come with value addition and that will help alot,” he advised.
In his valedictory address, the outgone VC, Prof Eyitope Ogunbodede, said he left the university stronger than he met it and expressed confidence in the capacity and capability of Bamire to be more successful.
While presenting his inauguration speech, the Pro-Chancellor, Udoji congratulated Bamire and his predecessor and urged the new VC to relate peacefully with the university host community and do away with things that may cause hostility among the town and gown.
The inauguration ceremony was attended by members of the academia, traditional rulers, captains of industries, among other stakeholders.