24 years after, UNIUYO yet to get take-off grant



Twenty four years after the Federal Government took over the University of Cross River State renaming it University of Uyo, the traditional take-off grant has not been released to the institution.

Vice Chancellor, Prof. Comfort Ekpo, who made the disclosure during the school’s 21st convocation ceremony said this development has hampered the rapid provision of needed infrastructures at its main campus, leading to the overstretching of facilities at the town campus of the institution.

“We in Akwa Ibom State must therefore not fail to cry louder to the Federal Government to kindly look in the direction of this exceptionally promising university and cause the release of the traditional take-off grant or some bulk sum to enable it to fulfill its mandate as a 21st century university. This is the only way we will be able to reduce the current acute accommodation problems for staff and students, as well as provide befitting lecture halls, hostel facilities and world-class libraries fitted with Information and Communication Technology (ICT) facilities.”

Prof. Ekpo who was addressing the convocation for the last time as she bows out on November 30th after five years in the saddle, stressed that, “Except universities in Nigeria enjoy some level of autonomy in funding, the prospect of competing favourably with world class universities will continue to be a pleasant dream.”

The outgoing vice chancellor who presented Prof. Enefiok Essien, a professor of law as her successor, said she was stepping out at a time UNIUYO is seen as the 10th most sort for institution in Nigeria.

According to her, in the 2015 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, 40, 000 candidates applied for admission into the school, but regretted that, the institution was given a quota of only 6,659.

The elated VC further noted that, she was handing over the administration of the school at the time the university earned full accreditation for 52 out of 71 academic programmees conducted by the National Universities Commission in 2014, noting that, 18 courses secured interim accreditation while only one course was denied accreditation.

“I must stress that, pharmacy programmee for the first time since its commencement 21 years ago, has now earned full accreditation status. On the whole, the University of Uyo, with its highest number of programmes 71 – went through the accreditation exercise and emerged as third in the country in the national accreditation exercise.”

At the convocation, out of 4, 186 graduands, eleven finished in the First Class Division with a female student being the overall best graduating student.

“The year 2015 is particularly significant in many ways. I have, for the first time in the history of this great institution harvested a female overall best graduating student in the person of Miss Nsidibe Solomon Etuk of the Department of Music, with a CGPA of 4.65. It is noteworthy that the overall best graduating students in medicine Dr. Imaobong Udom, and pharmacy, Miss Grace Monday Williams, are females”.

Prof. Ekpo called on parents who are fond of sending their wards to universities abroad to be careful as most of such schools were not comparable to Nigerian universities.

Highlights of the ceremony was the installation of the Emir of Hadejia, and Chairman, Jigawa State Council of Chiefs, Alhaji Abubakar Maje, as the fourth pro-chancellor of the university, the conferment of honorary degrees on three eminent Nigerians including the Special Adviser to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Ita Enang; industrialist, Mrs. Folurunsho Alakija, and music maestro, Chief Uko Akpan Umana. They bagged honorary doctorate degrees in law, humanities and music respectively.

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