Africa’s foremost businessman and Chairman of Aliko Dangote Foundation, Alhaji Aliko Dangote has made yet another critical intervention in the educational sector when he donated fully equipped 2,160 bed space hostel complex to the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria at the weekend.
The students’ halls of residence comprising of 10 blocks of 360 rooms built at a colossal sum of N1.2billion is coming after similar gestures to Bayero University, Kano and University of Ibadan, where the business mogul donated multi-billion Naira business school complexes respectively as part of his contribution to the educational development in the country.
The new students hall of residence was commissioned to commemorate the 41st convocation of the University during which the university authorities reciprocated the act of philanthropy by conferring on him and the renowned labour leader, Hassan Sumonu, honourary Doctorate Degree. Also 15,787 graduating students were also awarded various degrees.
The President of Dangote Group on the occasion explained that he was moved to build the structure having realized that the student population at the universities have recorded significant increase without a corresponding growth in terms of infrastructure lamenting that the situation has remained a subsisting and growing major challenge as Nigerian public universities continue to grapple with under funding.
“Thus, I will like to use this opportunity to enjoin the Federal Government to consider allocating special funds to the universities to enable them to improve on research and upgrade their infrastructure. Such special intervention has become imperative given the perennial funding challenges facing our universities”, he stated.
Dangote posited that the Federal Government alone could not shoulder the entire burden of funding tertiary education due to competing needs of other sectors that also demand priority attention. This is where Public Private Partnership (PPP) can and should come in to fill the gap.
He then enjoined the private sector to adopt a new approach towards supporting the federal government in tackling the funding deficit in the higher institutions of learning.
Said he: “I strongly believe the private sector must go beyond just the payment of the 2% Education levy and be ready to join hands with the State and Federal Governments in expanded funding for tertiary education in Nigeria. This will ensure that our institutions of higher learning are positioned to produce graduates who can transform this nation.
“If there are two things that I am passionate about, they are education and entrepreneurship. I believe they go hand in hand. Some years ago, as Chairman of the National Committee on Job Creation, my committee strived to fashion out strategies for integrating entrepreneurship into our national educational curriculum, in line with what obtains in the Western world.
While expressing his gratitude on the award conferred on him, Alhaji Dangote described ABU as “an institution famed for its incredibly thorough academic tradition, the quality of faculty, and the enriching experiences of life within its walls. Today, the university has lived to its billing as a melting pot for ideologies by honouring a renowned socialist and champion of employees’ rights, Alhaji Hassan Sunmonu and Myself, for being a leading capitalist and investor in employment generating enterprises.”
Dangote noted that “It is also with a deep sense of fulfilment that today’s occasion is also being used for the commissioning of 10 blocks of student hostels which consists of 360 fully equipped rooms with capacity for housing 2160 students, built at a cost of N1.2 billion donated by the Aliko Dangote Foundation to Ahmadu Bello University, (ABU) Zaria.
“Our intervention is designed to lessen the plight of students who suffer acute accommodation challenges within the campus. We have brought similar intervention to University of Ibadan (UI) and Bayero University Kano (BUK) amongst other institutions”, Alhaji Dangote stated.
While commending him, Governor Nasiru El-Rufai of Kaduna State who officially opened the hostel said Mr. Dangote’s philanthropic spirit should be emulated by others who have been blessed by God.
A visibly elated Governor, who is an alumnus of the University, said both government and the private sector can partner to lift the educational sector in Nigeria pointing out that if not for the efforts of the university management, the institution was already dying.
The Vice Chancellor, Professor Ibrahim Garba who was very excited at the magnitude of the structures said the University is the largest in West Africa and described the Aliko Dangote hostel project as a “big relief,” saying lack of adequate accommodation is one of the nightmares of the university.
He told the audience that Alhaji Dangote’s kindheartedness to the university was is immeasurable, saying of the 50,000 students of the university, the institution could hardly accommodate 10,000 and that the new hostel was the first addition after 40 years to the hostels built by the university.
While commending the Aliko Dangote Foundation, Director Physical Planning and Municipal Services of the University, Engineer Muhammad Aminu Sambo, said: “This is a big relief because the university has limited accommodation in relation to the numbers of students admitted every year. This is one of our nightmares.”
He commended the Chairman of Aliko Dangote Foundation and urged all able Nigerians to emulate him and intervene in the educational sector.
National President of the Ahmadu Bello University Alumni Association Professor Ahmed Tijani Mora had recently noted that the contribution of the Aliko Dangote Foundation to the educational sector and more importantly to the school was unprecedented. He said it was in this regards that the University Alumni Association recently conferred a Corporate Award on Aliko Dangote.
It would be recalled that Alhaji Dangote through his Foundation had only recently donated a World Class Dangote Business School worth N1.2bn to the Bayero University Kano, and built another one in University of Ibadan worth N250M. he also donated N200 million to Katsina State University.
In the same vein, funding was also provided for the construction of a 500 capacity student hostel complex at the University of Science and Technology, Wudil in Kano state. The Foundation gave N118 million for a squash complex project at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka main campus and another N50 million to the University of Port Harcourt.
Expressing the motive behind his educational intervention across the nation, Alhaji Dangote had said: “I do not only want to be known as the Africa’s Richest Man, but the biggest philanthropist. I will continue to use my resources and my voice to help shape a better Nigeria, and Africa as a whole.”
Ibadan Poly unveils Nigerian made ventilator, automated handwashing machine
The Polytechnic Ibadan, on Thursday unveiled made in Nigeria mechanical ventilator and automated hand washing machine produced by the department of Mechatronics Engineering.
The development, according to the institution, is aimed at combating the COVID-19 disease in the country and other related diseases. The ventilator is an essential equipment in the treatment of coronavirus patients and went through all necessary procedures. It was tested at the University College Hospital, Ibadan (UCH) last week.
The research team who carried out the development under the Deanship of Engr. Tijani B.O and the Rectorship of Prof. Adebiyi Kazeem include; Engr. Olaiya Kamourudeen, Mr. Olanlere Oladeji, Mr. Oluokun Tolulope, Engr. Bello Abdulrahaman, Mr. Sanusi Babatunde, Mr. Azeez O.R, Mr. Ajayeoba Israel and a consultant from the University College Hospital, Ibadan, (UCH) Dr. Adebayo Oluwaseun. Interestingly, these students are still undergoing their Ordinary National Diploma (OND).
It was also gathered that the ventilator and hand washing machine housing a dryer, were among the new innovations of the department which has just been accredited to run Higher National Diploma (HND) Programme.
The citadel of learning has equally produced hand sanitizer and face mask which were donated to the Oyo state government in support of the fight against coronavirus pandemic.
According to the Rector, Prof. Kazeem Adebiyi, while addressing newsmen shortly after unveiling the devices, informed that the institution In its bid to complement the efforts of the government in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, produced mechanical ventilator and smart hand washers.
Adebiyi disclosed that the institution spent about N2,000,000 (Two million naira) to produce the ventilator, noting that the cost will be lesser if it was a mass production process. He lauded the Seyi Makindele led government for releasing grant to the institution which he claimed made it possible for the management to embark on several projects that were long overdue.
He stressed that this was the first time since 2009 that the institution would receive grant from the state government to embark on accreditation process, adding that before now, the management sometimes go as far as taking loans from banks for accreditation.
“We are just using this avenue to appreciate the government for what they have done for us. When we received the letter from NBTE that we passed all our accreditation, we were very joyful. We did accreditation for thirteen programmes and we passed all the thirteen programmes.
“Also, we did three professional accreditation programmes which we passed and that looked like magic to everybody that how were we able to achieve that and then we said, since we have the support of the government.
“When we looked at the records, the last time the institution benefitted from such accreditation grant from government was in 2009 and when the present government came on board, we were bothered because about fifteen to sixteen of our programmes were due for accreditation.
“I said, look, lets go and meet the governor, they asked if I was sure because we have not received anything from them in years, but I insisted that we make a trial.
“The governor approved our request immediately and the grant was used judiciously for various needs; we procured necessary equipments, renovated buildings, secured accreditation for programmes, among others”, the Rector added.
Also commenting, Israel Ajayeoba, a student who was part of the research team, said the mechanical ventilator was designed in a way that it can be adjusted depending on the rate at which the patient needs it.
COVID-19: Oyo student builds solar-powered automatic hand washing, rinsing, drying unit
In his bid to help prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), a 300 level student of the department of Physics with Electronics, Ajayi Crowther University, Aderinola Joshua has built a solar-powered automatic hand washing, rinsing, and drying, a project that was commended by the Oyo state government.
During the display of the project, which was held at the ministry of education on Tuesday, the Special Assistant to Governor Seyi Makinde on Students’ Matters, Mr. Olojede Victor who lauded the initiative, also described the development as a thing of joy to see students in the state rising to contribute their own quota to support the government at this trying time.
The governor’s aide further emphasized that he will ensure that government at all levels in the state partner with the young, brilliant student and also see that the project is well executed for use in the State. Olojede also assured that through his office, the state government will continue to promote and support the innovation of students.
Present at the test running of the prototype, the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs. Olabamiwo Adeosun commended the student for making judicious use of the pandemic period to proffer a stress-free measure to prevent COVID-19.
Also commenting, the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Chief Bisi Ilaka in his remarks applauded the inventor for a job well done, just as he enjoined other students to emulate their colleague who has made the entire student populace proud.
The Permanent Secretary, Education, Science and Technology, Mrs. Aminat Atere congratulated the student for taking the opportunity of the pandemic to think of this great initiative.
“I want to appreciate you for this laudable innovation, more importantly at a time when our youths are into internet frauds. You have created an idea that if the state government key into will also make you an employer of labour.”
Others at the event included, Commissioner for Education, Mr. Olasunkanmi Aremu Olaleye, Deputy Chief of Staff , Mr. Olawale Mogbonjubola, Directors at the ministry of Education, Science, and Technology, Executive Adviser to the governor on Agric business, Mr. Debo Akande, among others.
Ibadan Poly Management Lauds Makinde On Relaxation Of Coronavirus Stay At Home Order
The Polytechnic, Ibadan has commended the Seyi Makinde led Oyo state government on the relaxation of the stay-at-home order to ease the economic burden of the people as well as allow them some measures of freedom.
The Management gave the commendation in a statement signed by Mrs Modupe Theresa Fawale, The Registrar of the institution.
The Management also observed that it was the milk of kindness flowing in The Government that informed this humane action.
The Management urged all and sundry to comply with the directives of the Government on the COVID-19 scourge noting that the Government made it clear to everybody that “all is not well” and that it is in our collective interest to obey the rules.
On the online teaching and learning introduced by the Management of the institution to keep academic activities alive, the statement commended the warm acceptance of the students participation in the programme which has been filling the void that this lockdown has created.
The statement further charged the students: “You are advised to continue your stay-at-home and follow all directives of The National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
You will be adequately informed when a definite resumption date is decided”, the Management further informed the students.
Noting that the COVID-19 pandemic appeared to be on the increase in almost all the states in the country, the management observed that “it is imperative on all stakeholders, staff and students of The Polytechnic, Ibadan to continue to practice and promote basic hygiene including the washing of hands and use of sanitizers. It is also mandatory to use face masks as necessary, practice universal social distancing and avoid large gatherings.
“The Polytechnic will continue to closely monitor the development on the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) pandemic and will do everything possible to ensure the health, safety and well-being of The Polytechnic, Ibadan community.”
“She will also continue to intensify efforts in the areas of research, as work is ongoing on the various equipment for the curtailment of this pandemic disease, academic content and mass enlightenment” the statement stressed.
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