How we escaped $25m debt trap that could have killed our varsity- Bishop Wale Oke
A loan deal of $25 million, that almost went awry, but for the intervention of God, almost scuttled the dreams of the promoters of faith-based Precious Cornerstone University (PCU), even before it got off the ground.
The Promoter/Chancellor, Precious Cornerstone University (PCU), Bishop Wale Oke, disclosed this over the weekend, at a special thanksgiving service and dedication of the operating license of the university at the church’s headquarters along Old Ife Road, Ibadan.
He expressed gratitude to God for the financial support on the project. Bishop Oke, the Presiding Bishop, Sword of the Spirit Ministries, while recounting his experience in the failed loan deal, explained that he was approached by a church member in London, who told him that he worked with an organization that finances projects in Africa.
He said the man assured him that the organization would be willing to support PCU with a soft loan that will be repaid over a long time with very little interest.
According to him, ”the man facilitated a meeting with the leadership of the organization during which a soft loan of $25 million, was offered to PCU.
His words; ”They advised me that $10 million would be transferred to PCU for development, while the remaining $15 million would be invested with a financial institution in London.
“The company was to pay an interest that would take care of the whole capital and interest over a number of years.
“The offer looked so good that I immediately commenced the process of collecting the loan. But when I was about to submit the last signed document, God spoke to me and directed me not to collect the loan.
“The decision to obey God in that circumstance was tough for me, but I had to stop”.
According to him, the financial institution with which $15 million was to be invested went under only one month to the date the repayment of the loan would have begun.
He said: “What this means was that PCU, would have been forced to repay $25 million with interest. This would definitely have killed the university, even before of commencement of operations”.
While attributing the success, so far recorded by the institution to God, Oke proudly disclosed that the institution was not currently, owing any contractor, individual or organization, in spite of the massive infrastructures it has built.
He equally pointed out, that God also gave him men and women of wisdom, integrity, experience and commitment to serve as members of the Board of Trustees and the Governing Council. He enjoined God to send people of same sorts as staffs and students to the university.
A visibly elated Oke recalled that the journey took 11 years before the license was issued in December, last year. He added that PCU is faith-based and that the word of God will remain the cornerstone of the institution.
“A faith-based institution was clearly written on our hearts when we received the idea of this university. We are in this to raise scholars that are sound in academics, morals, research and who are godly. So, PCU is a mission university.
“We don’t want to turn out educated crooks who are very brilliant to loot our treasury, but those who are very brilliant to change the society for the better.”
He said he did not initially know that the journey would last for 11 years, and that was why he gave an instruction for an 11- day thanksgiving sessions, to appreciate God.
The Chaplain, Aso Rock Chapel, Pastor Seyi Malomo, who represented Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the event, commended Oke for the facilities already built for PCU.
He said he had spent 17 years in Ghana before he was appointed as the Chaplain of the Villa and added that PCU facilities dwarf those of most universities which Nigerians attend in Ghana, spending fortunes on as school and other fees.
He urged parents to send their wards to institutions such as PCU, which have enough facilities to offer quality education and sound moral teaching.
In an earlier event, the Olubadan of Ibadan Oba Saliu Adetunji, described the university as a great blessing to Ibadanland, when the cleric in the company of members of the Board of Trustees led by its chairman, Gen. Oladayo Popoola (rtd), visited him in his palace.
The monarch noted that aside from providing a conducive environment for learning and research, the institution will provide employment for the good people of the city.
Oba Adetunji extolled Bishop Oke as a man of integrity who has the interest of Ibadan at heart. He prayed for the success and smooth take-off of the institution.
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