The Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University, Oye Ekiti, Prof Abayomi Fashina, has advised his colleagues across the country to think outside the box to be able to fund their universities, saying no institution of learning can develop with sole and absolute reliance on money from the government.
On the rising incidences of Kidnappings and cult killings in some schools of higher learning in recent times, Fashina said the university is investing in intelligence gathering and digital gadgets to monitor the campus and apprehend evildoers before perpetrating their nefarious activities.
The VC also disclosed that arrangement has been concluded for the reinstatement of the suspended Chairman of the academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) of the institution, Dr. Gabriel Omonijo, who was slammed with indefinite suspension in 2019.
Fashina spoke in Oye Ekiti, headquarters of Oye Local government on Sunday during an event marking his 100 days in office.
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The VC said: “As part of our efforts to restore peace, we are bringing back Dr. Omonijo and Mr. Seun Odedeji who were suspended on accounts of their union activities during the time of my predecessor. We have promised this and we have opted for out-of-court settlement”.
On how best to fund any university, he said: ” God is the one bankrolling us. If you think outside the box, you will do many things. We are going into partnerships with bodies, organizations, and well-meaning individuals for them to invest here. We are also using our vast human resources to achieve results.
“We are also blocking leakages to be able to raise our IGR and these have been paying off”.
Fashina said the university is deploying digital equipment and partnering security agencies, host community, and Students’ Union, to fish out potential cultists to avert disruption of activities and perpetration of killings by unruly students.
Fashina said the governments of Nigeria has not been able to achieve food security status despite its human and material resources because it pays lip service to agriculture.
“Nigeria only pays lip service to agriculture. We only do farming with our mouths. That is why we can’t produce what we eat.
“We have provided modern agriculture implements in the faculty of agriculture. We are putting our students into cropping with the hope to empower them after graduation. Students must learn the skills for survival. Agriculture has a lot of value chain, to me, farming is a way of life”.
The VC said he would place a high premium on the welfare of workers by ensuring timely promotion, payment of salaries and benefits, provide an affordable transport system, and security of students and staff.
Fashina who inaugurated some projects promised to provide modern structures and road networks to connect the school, give it aesthetic value and increase the quality of education within the next year.
Among the VC’s achievements within 100 days of his appointment are, peace and stability on campus, promotion of 20 lecturers to the professorial rank, provision of shuttle buses for staff, Prompt disbursement of Earned Academic Allowance, and Earned Allowance to all deserving staff without rancor.
Others are the allocation of land and support for the laying of NASU secretariat and SUG building, the establishment of FUOYE printing press and bakery, construction of ICT cubicles, and furnishing with 100 computers.
Introduction of digital security operation on campus, the introduction of new courses for the ongoing admission exercise which includes: Philosophy, Religious studies, Nursing, Environmental management and toxicology, and establishment of FUOYE staff school at Ayegbaju.