By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi
President Muhammad Buhari has suggested that University convocation be for presenting new discoveries and inventions that can add value to the technology of the country.
He said it has become imperative for Nigeria to come up with its own products for others to buy as the only way to not only economically benefit, but assert its presence in the World of politics and invention.
Buhari explained that the country cannot seat back as simply consumers of other nations products in the midst of global competition, saying “We must come up with our own products for others to buy”.
The President was speaking at the 23rd, 24th, 25th combined convocation ceremony of Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU), Bauchi held weekend at its Yelwa campus.
President Buhari, represented by a director with the National Universities Commission, Dr. Gidado Bello, noted that education is fast becoming a globally dear commodity putting nations in stiff competition to outwit one another in the area of offering quality knowledge and positive research.
He therefore stressed the need for agencies in charge of educational development to find a way of encouraging the youths to acquire learning in the country’s institutions, as well as attract foreign students and researchers so that the global ranking of our universities can soar.
The President called on the ATBU staff to re-invent the culture of leadership, followership and stewardship, saying they must be leaders in their assigned responsibilities, imbibe followership to constituted authority, and must be stewards to the overall system for the progress of the country.
The Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Saminu Abdulrahman Ibrahim has in a welcome address revealed that the combined convocation has 8, 496 graduands, made up of 490 for diploma, 5, 637 for first degrees, 1,518 for PGD, 770 for Masters, and 90 for PhD.
He explained that of the total number of first degrees, 118 obtained first class, 1, 618 obtained second class upper, 2, 609 obtained second class lower, 1, 231 obtained third class and 61 got pass degrees.
The Vice Chancellor enumerated various achievements of the institution since its last convocation in 2016 which include construction of 3 hostels, a 30-room professorial office block, faculty of management sciences at its Gubi campus, 160 capacity studio, twin 500 seat lecture hall and water supply scheme, among others.
Prof. Saminu Ibrahim expresse3d gratitude to the federal government for supporting universities in many ways, especially through TETFund support and the Presidential Needs Assessment Intervention Funds, and appealed to the government to release the final tranche of the Needs assessment to facilitate completion of on-going much needed projects.
The ATBU Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the Governing Council, Dr. Nimota N. Akanbi said that it is the cardinal responsibility of parents, government and stakeholders to guard the godly principle of making education a universal right.
Dr. Nimota Akanbi commended the Buhari administration for its acclaimed efforts in ensuring a boost in the education sector by restoring relative peace especially in the North Eastern part of the country.
She explained that one of their primary charges is to train entrepreneurs and conduct researches that will turn the fortunes of the country from consumer to a producing nation.