From Okwe Obi, Abuja
The Vice Chancellor of the University of Calabar (UNICAL), Professor Florence Obi, has praised alumni of the institution who have distinguished themselves in their various fields of endeavours.
Prof Obi, who stated this recently when she led a delegation to the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Umana Umana and the Minister in State for Health, Joseph Ekumankama, said she was elated that “two of their own” were found worthy and competent to be appointed.
While decorating them with the insignias of the institution, she rolled out some of the giant strides she had embarked upon since her assumption of office two years ago.
She, however, sought the assistance of the ministers to assist in completing ongoing projects in the which are under their ministries.
“Early 2021 I had to lead a courtesy team to one of our own who was here. I am so excited and elated that the baton was exchanged from our own to our own,” Obi said.
“I am proud to say that the university is doing very well. It is one of those second-generation universities that has been able to produce credible men and women who are doing well across the world and we are very proud of them.
“When the list of the last ministerial appointment was made and we saw the list and we were very happy that two of ours made the list. And as a university, we had to come to congratulate you.
“We are very happy and proud of you. We want to use this opportunity to thank President Muhammadu Buhari for finding it necessary to appoint alumni from the University of Calabar as ministers.
“We hope that he will do more because we have produced so many of them who are willing to serve Nigeria.
“We have come here to honour you as one of our own and to decorate you with our insignia.
“More importantly, we are here to equally brief you on the development currently going on in the University of Calabar.
“As I took over office, we have worked so hard to improve the road network and I want the honourable minister to know that our road network is ongoing from the main gate to Ayade volleyball and all other areas, is supported by your parastatal, NDDC.
“We want to use this opportunity to thank you, sir. By extension, the NDDC and all the officers involved in making sure that it is possible to transform our university.
“Our desire is to make our university a smart campus and that we have started. I am sure that that dream of ours will be complete with what we just got today courtesy of Mr President and Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Pantami.
“As a university, we have a lot of projects that are ongoing. One of the projects I want to draw the attention of the honourable minister to is a project that was given to us by the NDDC, a hostel project for medical students. It has been abandoned for well over six years.
“I thought I should bring this to the attention of the honourable minister. The then minister had promised that we were going to look at that but unfortunately, he left.
“That is why you can appreciate when I said I was elated that one of our own took over the position.
“Because we will love to see that that project is completed to provide more accommodations for our medical students.”
In his remarks, Umana Umana, promised to assist UNICAL in the completion of most of the projects raised by Professor Obi.
“We have all the reasons in the world to be proud of our own. I have also listened carefully to the issues she raised and that was I invited the permanent secretary.
“I want to assure you that with the ministry working with the Niger Delta Commission, we will support you in the areas you have asked us to support you.
“I am happy you started by appreciating the NDDC in providing hostels and infrastructures. This will continue,” he said.
- Likewise, Ekumankama pledged to facilitate the supply of drugs and other medical equipment to the institution.