Members of the University community are requested to note the change in the procedure for mop-up/new registration of formal sector enrollees, which is now to be done through biometrics capturing at all the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), State/Zonal Offices nationwide. The Coordinator of NHIS in FUNAAB, Dr. Sola Akinwande stated that the University, through the Office of the Vice-Chancellor, had been informed of the directive of the NHIS headquarters for a change in registration procedure.
Registration would be done at the NHIS Ogun State Office, Seriki Fadare Plaza (Ground Floor), after the Governor’s Office, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta. New staff of the University that are yet to register for NHIS; those who registered manually from August 2016, whose registrations are yet to be effected; and old staff that are yet to register, are now required to check the NHIS Desk Office, to write down their names, to facilitate the registration exercise. However, each University staff to be registered, is required to produce the following documents for verification during capturing; photocopy of staff identity card; photocopy of letter of appointment and the most recent salary pay slips for three (3) months.
News Published in April 2017
Members of the University community are requested to note the change in the procedure for mop-up/new registration of formal sector enrollees, which is now to be done through biometrics capturing at all the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), State/Zonal Offices nationwide. The Coordinator of NHIS in FUNAAB, Dr. Sola Akinwande stated that the University, through the Office of the Vice-Chancellor, had been informed of the directive of the NHIS headquarters for a change in registration procedure.
A postgraduate student in the University's Department of Soil Science and Land Management, College of Plant Science and Crop Protection (COLPLANT), Mrs. Bolaji Thanni, has bagged the 'Most Promising Innovation Award', at the NextGen Bio-innovation competition, held at the African Diaspora Biotech Summit 2017, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, while successful participants at the two-month Skill Acquisition Programme of the International Centre for Professional Development (ICPD) of the University, were recently presented completion certificates.
For the UK award, an innovative presentation, which earned Mrs. Bolaji the award, was the "Advocate for Clean Climate and Environment (ACCE) Nigeria. According to her presentation, ACCE is an environmentally-conscious and non-profit organisation that is poised to providing solutions to the changing climate in Nigeria. The group was convened by Mrs. Bolaji Thanni and co-ordinated by the Convener, Mr. Rasheed Lawal (VP), Mr. Hammed Mogaji (Secretary), Mr. Segun Akintunde (Information Technology Personnel) and Mr. Daniel Anim (Research Officer), who were once students; either at the undergraduate or postgraduate level in the University. The organisation’s staff adviser was Dr. Moses Oyatogun, Director FUNAAB Zoo Park. The NextGen Africa Bio-innovation pitching competition was held by the foundation, to celebrate bio-innovations made by Africa to improve life and system in Africa. JR biotech foundation is a non-profit organisation, established as an action oriented-entity, to enhance scientific research and research-based education in Africa. The foundation selected 17 African-based agricultural researchers, students and academics from the numerous applications received, to attend a world-class Molecular Biology Laboratory Training workshop with the Department of Plant Science, University of Cambridge.
The training, which provided participants with new knowledge and practical experiences on a variety of molecular biotechnology laboratory techniques, could be applied to improve the quality of their research and to train others. Also provided for them were training on molecular detection of plant viruses, immunodiagnostic test to identify infected plant, microscopic investigation of fungi colonisation in rice root and marker trait association, among others.
The summit's keynote addresses titled, "Strengthening Biotech Research Capacity Building, Innovation and Commercialisation in Africa" and "The Role of African Diaspora in Building Competitive and Sustainable African Bio-Economy" were delivered by the Director-General, National Biotechnology Development Agency, Professor Lucy Ogbadu and the Executive Director, Africa Foundation for Development, Mr. Onyekachi Wambu, respectively. One of the panel sessions with the theme, "Restructuring Africa’s Tertiary Education System to Make it Globally Competitive", had the Director, Biotechnology Centre of FUNAAB, Dr. Adewale Obadina, where he spoke on the need to make tertiary education system in Africa attain global standing. He identified poor infrastructural development, lack of quality training, capacity building and funding for research and training at the university level, as well as obsolete teaching curricula as problems that limit creative thinking and the ability of many African students to compete on the global stage.
In another development, the representative of Africa Asian Foreign Investment and Development Agency and Brightsword Technology, Singapore, Dr. Raphael Iluyomade, during the presentation of ICPD Certificates, has tasked the newly-certified trainees, to create positive image about themselves, which, would determine what they want to become. He said, “Never allow circumstances to lead you, you have to lead circumstances”, while sharing his personal experiences, as he told them that everything they acquire and learn now would determine who they become. Earlier, the Centre Manager of ICPD, Mr. Lawrence Kazeem, had welcomed the trainees, tasked them, never to be idle at any point in time, but keep their hands on something, which informed the two weeks training at the Centre. The trainees were certified on different fields such as mobile phone repairs and maintenance: solar and inverter installation and maintenance, econometric and mathematical economics, events planning and management, business planning and proposal writing. Others include: computer engineering, computer communication, network and security, web design, application development, blog management, photography, catering and hotel management.
Matriculating students for the 2016/2017 Academic Session, are being notified that the Matriculation Ceremony would be held at the FUNAAB Ceremonial Building, on Wednesday, April 26, 2017. Matriculating students are to wear their academic gowns, which are obtainable from their various Colleges, with effect from Monday, April 24, 2017 on presentation of receipt for the payment of necessary fees. They are to return the gowns, not later than Tuesday, May 2, 2017 by 3pm. Failure to return the gowns at the stipulated time would attract a fine of N100 per day, while any loss of gown attracts a replacement fee of N10,000 only, payable to the Bursar. Matriculating Students are strongly advised to sign the Matriculation Register at the Examinations and Records Office, on or before Friday, May 5, 2017 with the proof of having collected academic gowns, receipts for payment of tuition fees and evidence of having returned the gowns. Failure to sign the register by the closing date would mean that the affected persons are not considered as 'bonafide' students of FUNAAB. Matriculation Ceremony starts by 9.30am while matriculating students are to be seated not later than 9.20am, as all entrances into the venue would be blocked, as soon as the Vice-Chancellor’s procession takes-off.
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Olusola Oyewole, has charged students, embarking on the Farm Practical Year (FPY), to take the programme seriously and be worthy ambassadors of the University in their various locations of posting, stressing that the FPY programme is a key requisite, qualifying them to earn a degree from the University.
Giving this charge, during the 2016/2017 Orientation Programme, organised by the Centre for Community-Based Farming Scheme (COBFAS) of the University, the Vice-Chancellor, who was represented by the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Development), Professor Ololade Enikuomehin, disclosed that FPY was a phase in the academic life of the students, even as he admonished then to make good use of the opportunity. "This exposure might be the only one you will have, to have first-hand experience, to fit into the kind of farming that is practicable worldwide. Give it the seriousness that it demands". Congratulating the students for qualifying to be part of the FPY experience, the Vice-Chancellor assured them that on the part of the University Management, it would do all it can, to ensure that the FPY was a memorable experience for them.
Giving an overview of what the FPY programme was all about, the Director of COBFAS, Professor Emmanuel Fakoya, pointed out that the Centre was established, as a way of bringing the Bachelor of Agriculture (B. Agric) students close to the realities and practice of agriculture in Nigeria. He noted that through the programme, students get first-hand training and experience in communities, where farmers reside and practice farming with the same socio-economic system to where the farmers operate. According to him, the programme was reviewed in 2015, whereby two components were added to it, including on-campus training for students, in order to take advantage of available facilities on campus for six months, and community-based training in the COBFAS locations, for another two months. He added that rotational schedule would be adopted for students participating in the programme for on-campus and community-based training. Professor Fakoya disclosed that the programme was expected to also include a one-month orientation and instruction lecture on campus, two months on-campus training. for Group I, two months on-campus training for Group II, two months community-based training for Group III, one month wrap-up/ field trip and examination on campus; making a total of nine months.
The Director disclosed that the vision of the Centre was to produce highly-skilled manpower that would drive the economy in the rural communities in Nigeria, through agriculture for sustainable development and food security, while it had a mission to contribute to the sound training of agricultural students towards building great future and modern farmers, for sustainable development, in line with the mission of the University. Professor Fakoya highlighted the key component of the scheme to include; the development of rain-fed and irrigated crop farming, which involves crop-based enterprise and activities such as vegetable production, nursery production, organic farming, arable farming, plantain production and rapid multiplication of plantain suckers. Livestock farming activities, which include poultry production, ruminant production, rabbit production, dairy farming, apiculture, aquaculture and piggery, while institutional support and strengthening were part of the component on community-impact through COBFAS. Other tasks include processing, packaging and marketing strategies for garri production, cassava chips, flour production, cheese production/pasteurisation, meat processing, seed production, processing, packaging as well as training and human capital development.
Speaking on the rules and regulations governing the FPY programme and the expectations of COBFAS, the Deputy Director of COBFAS, Dr. Oladapo Fasae, said lateness to scheduled farm activities and briefing would not be tolerated, as students were expected to treat COBFAS staff with courtesy and are to attend farm activities in appropriate clothing, which had been recommended. Students are to always come to the farm with their cutlasses, farm boots, rain-coats, identity cards and other necessary tools. The Deputy Director noted that the use of hired labour for farm activities were not allowed while any form of impersonation was punishable by expulsion from the University. He advised the students to channel their complaints and grievances, through their group leaders to COBFAS staff or FPY supervisors, adding that all COBFAS properties should be handled with care as stealing of any COBFAS property would attract maximum sanction of expulsion from the University.
The Principal Farm Manager of COBFAS, Mr. David Giwa, further hinted the students on the history of the COBFAS locations at Iwoye-Ketu, Ode-Lemo, Odogbolu and Isaga-Orile, alongside their traditional beliefs, culture, ‘do's’ and ‘dont's’, so that they (students) do not run into trouble with their host communities. He also advised them to be humble and avoid unnecessary display of their property and affluence, to avoid calling undue attention to themselves. On health tips, the Acting Director of University Health Services, Dr. Abiodun Amusan, admonished the students to protect themselves from any condition that could make them fall ill. He encouraged the students to go along with several protective cloths, pairs of fabric gloves, prophylactic anti-malaria drugs, one insecticide treated net, a pair of jungle boots and cooking materials. He also enjoined the students not to forsake their personal hygiene, mismanage their time on trivial issues, avoid skipping of meals, especially breakfast and to keep their doors closed always, by putting wire-nets in their rooms and make use of rodenticide in a safe manner.
The Dean, Student Affairs, Professor Adeniyi Olayanju, charged the students to concentrate on their mission to their various FPY locations, and should not allow themselves to be involved in the politics of the various community. He noted that as a traditional setup, the communities had their own tradition, which should be abided with, even as he advised the students to be decent in their relationship with the opposite sex. The Principal Training Development Officer, Mrs. Oluwatosin Akinbola, Industrial Training Fund (ITF) Area Office in Abeokuta, who represented the ITF Area Manager, informed that the Student Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES) programme was aimed at breaching the gap between theory and practicals, by creating a balance and was designed for students that engage in practical course. She educated the students on how to fill their log books, as she assured that at the end of the programme, if they (students) complied with the guidelines, they would be paid a stipend of N15,000 each. Speaking on transportation services, as provided by the FUNAAB Bureau of Transportation (FUNAABOT), the Director of FUNAABOT, Dr. Salami Ismaila, who was represented by Mr. Kayode Ige, disclosed that transportation would be made available, to bring students into town from time-to-time, as he charged the students to always be orderly and respect FUNAABOT staff.
Similarly, students of the University have been advised to move out of their comfort zones, in order to record success in life. An Abeokuta-based motivational speaker, Mr. Bolaji Babalola, has admonished students, as they begin the FPY scheme, to put in more efforts into their studies to get high-flying results. Mr. Babalola stated this at the orientation programme. According to him, “The proof that you are awake is that you will stretch, go beyond your comfort zone. Do more. The interesting thing about our mind is that once it's stretched, it will not go back to the previous size anymore. It gets bigger and better”.
Mr. Babalola, who is also the State Coordinator for Nigeria Rebirth Project's Labour Room Reality TV show, a project aimed at creating over 100,000 job opportunities in 2018, charged the students to create an ‘A Team’, adding that the students should ensure that relationships were always made better. His words, “If you are the best among all your friends for a long time, it's time to change your circle. Get relationships that challenge you to know more; stretch more and inquire more”, as he added that “Our success in life is not in the colour of our skin, not in the pleasure of our homes, but in the development of our mind”.
Delivering a lecture on Farm Mechanisation, Engr. (Dr.) Ibukun Ola of the Department of Agricultural Engineering said that mechanisation of all farming processes allows one to have an optimum management of time and farm inputs. He added that people mechanise, to remove farm drudgery; for timely execution of all farm-activities as well as prevent farm losses and wastage of product during and after harvesting. In his lecture titled, “Micro-Livestock and Fish Production”, Dr. Adekunle Idowu of the Department of Aquaculture and Fisheries Management described fish as an important source of good quality protein required in human diet, noting that culturing fish was the most-assuring way of fish production known worldwide.
FUNAAB welcomes its Visiting Lecturer, Professor Florentin Smarandache from University of New Mexico, USA to the Mathematics department.
Professor FlorentinSmarandache is a world class Mathematician in the Department of Mathematics and Science, University of New Mexico, USA. He is a scientist and a writer. He writes in three languages: Romanian, French and English. He has published over 500 scientific papers and over 200 books in mathematics, physics, engineering, computer science, information fusion, as well as literary works such as poetry, stories, essays, novel, translation, dramas, plays for children, folklore, and, albums of arts.
Professor Smarandachein 1995 foundedNeutrosophic Logic/Set Theory which is an extension/generalization of the Fuzzy Logic/Set Theory founded in 1965 by Professor Lotfi A. Zadeh. Department of Mathematics FUNAAB is the only Department in any University in Nigeria and the whole of West Africa where there is an expert in Neutrosophic Logic/Set Theory in person of Professor A.A.A. Agboola. In recognition of the contributions of Professor Agboola to the research inNeutrosophic Logic/Set Theory, Professor Smarandachewill be visiting the University and in particular the Department of Mathematics between May 14 and June 4, 2017.
The visitation of Professor Smarandache to FUNAAB will be beneficial in the following regards:
- Establish scientific collaborations between Department of Mathematics FUNAAB and his Department in USA.
- Facilitate linkage between FUNAAB and his University in USA.
- Earn the Department of Mathematics FUNAAB and the University international recognition.
- Expose staff and students in the Departments of Mathematics, Statistics, Computer Science, Engineering, Food Technology, Economics, Agricultural Economics and Water Resources Management into new areas of research in Neutrosophic Logic/Set Theory and applications through direct teaching and scientific seminars.
- Donation of books to the University and the Department of Mathematics in particular.
The Outgone 2016/2017 Batch ‘A’ National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members that served in the University have been commended for their selfless service, positive and invaluable contributions to the development of the University. Giving the commendation was the Deputy Registrar II, Establishment Matters and Human Resources, Mr. Omowon Agbotoba, during the University’s send-forth party in honour of the corps members, held recently.
Represented by Mr. Ifeanyi Ejikeme of the Establishment Matters and Human Resources Office, Mr. Agbotoba congratulated the corpers on the successful completion of their programmes in their various tertiary institutions and for the mandatory one-year service scheme. He admonished them not to exercise fear as they are released into the labour market, because God that saw them through, during their school days, was still alive. While advising them to maintain a healthy lifestyle and live positively by contributing their quota to the development and progress of their fatherland, he assured the corps members that were still serving in the University that their complaints would be looked into.
Some of the outgone corps members shared their experiences while in FUNAAB and Abeokuta town. For AbdulQuadri Yusuf, FUNAAB management should invest more funds in the Directorate of University Farms (DUFARMS) and Industrial Park Unit (IPU), as part of measures for increased production of farm products and other products such as FUNAAB Bread, FUNAAB Palm oil and FUNAAB Honey, among others. He said this would help to increase the Internally-generated Revenue profile of the University as well as create employment opportunities. Tolulope Adebowale has suggested that the University should work more on providing accommodation for youth corpers serving in FUNAAB. She added that considering the landscape of the University, intra-campus transportation should be put in place, to reduce walking from one to another. Segun Adeyemo frowned at what he described as under-utilisation of youth corpers. He alleged that majority of the corpers serving in the University were first-class graduates and should, therefore, be allowed to handle smaller classes, practicals and assist in research works rather than being engaged in only administrative duties. Israel Olofuru made case for more lively social activities on campus, saying human beings were social in nature.
The Internal Corpers’ Liaison Officer (ICLO), Esan Oladapo, said members of staff of the University were industrious, hardworking and resilient. He said people of Abeokuta town were wonderful people, as he lent his support to the call that youth corps members should be allowed to go into teaching and research during their service years in the University. Speaking at the occasion, the Head, Directorate of Public Relations of the University, Mrs. Emi’ Alawode, who was represented by Mrs. Stella Kayode of the Directorate, used the occasion to, once again, appreciated the corpers for donating door tags to both the Directorates of Public Relations and Internal Audit, as their Batch Project for the year, saying they had engrave their names on the sands of time.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), in partnership with the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and Sterling Bank, under the CBN-Entrepreneurship Development Centre (CBN-EDC), is inviting final year students of the University, who are preparing for their mandatory one-year NYSC, to take advantage of the Youth Entrepreneurship Development Programme (YEDP) for self-empowerment. According to the Project Director of the Centre, Dr. Olumide Ajayi, the programme commenced in Nigeria in 2008 with a goal to fighting unemployment, engendering wealth and creating jobs for Nigerian youths, and through CBN-EDC, alongside its implementing agency; the Africa Leadership Forum, over 18,000 people had been trained, while more than N440 million had been accessed as business loans in the last 10 years.
No fewer than 60 women, drawn from different communities in Ogun State, have been trained by the Agricultural Media Resources and Extension Centre (AMREC) of the University, with skills and knowledge in fish handling, processing, value addition, storage, packaging, utilisation and marketing, at its capacity building training programme, organised by the Gender Issues and Youth Development (GIYD) Programme of the Centre.
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Olusola Oyewole, who was represented at the occasion by Professor Dorcas Adegbite of AMREC, expressed delight in the training and opined that training of women farmers was central to enhanced productivity among the farm families. The Vice-Chancellor had implored the participants to take full advantage of the training to broaden their knowledge base, for improved agricultural productivity and healthy living. He added that the training programme was expected to assist in developing and strengthening the skills, abilities and resources that women needed to sustain themselves, given the fast changing economic conditions in Nigeria.
The Director of AMREC, Professor Victor Olowe, had said that the workshop was meant to enhance the capacity of the women in fish processing, utilisation and marketing with a view to improving the economic and nutritional status of the women. Speaking through his representative, Dr. Titilayo Irekhore, the Director reiterated the commitment of AMREC to the timely and effective delivery of extension services on proven agricultural technologies to stakeholders in agriculture.
In appreciation, the Programme Leader, Gender Issues and Youth Development, Dr. Elizabeth Oluwalana, thanked the Vice-Chancellor for his support and interest in the empowerment of women. She noted that the knowledge gained from the training, if put into use, would improve the socio-economic status of the women.
The Women Leader in the Odeda Local Government of the state, Mrs. Margaret Adegbite, appreciated AMREC on behalf of the participants, for organising the training, which she described as timely. She implored the participants to go back to their respective communities and train their fellow female farmers. She concluded that the training would go a long way in improving the economic and nutritional status of the rural women and the farm families.
The event had in attendance, the leader of Women in Agriculture Programme in Ogun State, Mrs. Florence Oyekunle and other women representatives from Agbetu, Ajaaka, Adao, Labuta, Akintobi and Ojoo communities of Ogun State.
To enthrone peace, stability and improve security within the University and in the adjoining communities, FUNAAB Management has met with chairmen and secretaries of the various Community Development Associations (CDAs) that made up the adjoining communities of the University; other stakeholders such as representatives of security outfits; Police Community Relations’ Committee (PCRC); and students’ representatives, among others. Chairing the meeting, under the aegis of Standing Committee on Relationship with Communities Adjoining the University (SCORAC), the Dean, Student Affairs, Professor Adeniyi Olayanju, had described security as a matter of interest to University Management.
The Dean informed stakeholders that the University was not resting on its oars, as various committees had been constituted through the University Senate, which included the Committee on Students’ Unrest (COMISU). He added that the constitution of COMISU birthed the Senate Committee on off-Campus Policy for Students (SECOCPS) residing outside the University campus, while SECOCPS had recommended the establishment of the Sub-Committee on Off-campus Students Accommodation and Welfare (SOCSAW) and then the Senate Committee on Off-campus Residence for Students. Professor Olayanju said that the various committees were backed up by the University Senate to carry out their terms of reference and with a resolve to support students’ welfare. He stated further that a Desk Officer had been appointed to relate with all on any issue bordering on complaints and observations, as he charged the various CDA chairmen and secretaries to feel free to call or visit the Student Affairs Division’s office and submit their messages with the Desk Officer, who would in turn, forward them to the appropriate quarters, for necessary action. On behalf of the University, Professor Olayanju thanked stakeholders in the Harmony Estate, for donating a piece of land for the building of a police station, as he disclosed that the University was supporting the building of the police station with the sum of N15 million.
At the meeting, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Off-Campus Policy for Students (SECOCPS), Professor Toyin Arowolo, who was represented by the Director, Directorate of Grants Management, Professor Kola Adebayo, read out the recommended policies the various committees had so far presented for adoption, as well as the efforts of the University at ensuring peace with the communities. According to Professor Arowolo, the University had resolved to buy two utility vehicles; one for the Student Affairs’ Division, to be used for field-work and for reaching out to the various communities, while the second is for the Environmental Unit, for security purposes; within and outside the University campus. He added that FUNAAB had compensated all the people that had their properties damaged during the students’ unrest, through the monies generated from the reparation fees paid by students.
Aside the compensation and buying of utility vehicles, Professor Arowolo also disclosed that the University had set aside money, to buy a fire-fighting van during emergencies that would be used by FUNAAB and the communities. He further informed the meeting that the University would now ensure that the welfare of students living off-campus was better protected. To achieve this, the University would ensure adequate availability of hostel spaces, kitchen and toilet facilities, laundry facilities, electricity, potable water, access and exit points, record-keeping by house owner, hygiene and parking spaces for vehicles. Others include the provision of suitable security facility, appropriate rent charges and Closed-circuit Television (CCTV), among others. Professor Arowolo disclosed that any student living off-campus and found wanting, while students are expected to live in the hostel approved by the University.
The Chairman, Police Community Relations’ Committee (PCRC), Hon. Akinlabi Taiwo, thanked FUNAAB for its efforts and noted that one of the duties of PCRC was to ensure that security was guaranteed in the entire jurisdiction under it. Also, the Chairman, Joint FUNAAB Community Development Committee (JFCDC), Chief Sulaimon Fatola, described the intervention by the University as laudable and signified a new dawn for both FUNAAB and the communities. Chief Sulaimon said that the various adjoining communities had made several efforts since 2012, to work with the University in respect of security matters, but that every move made could not sail through, for bureaucratic reasons. The Divisional Officer, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Odeda Division, Superintendent Victor Oluwole-Phillips, had canvassed for an enhanced unity between the University and its adjoining community, as the sustainable means to ensure peace and progress, while charging the people to always feel free to provide information bothering on security matters to the necessary security outfits while useful questions and answers were provided at the parley.
The 2016/2017 Academic Session Matriculation Ceremony holds on Wednesday, April 26, 2017 at the FUNAAB Ceremonial Building, beginning at 9am.
A total of 3,062 newly registered students from the 10 Colleges of the University, are expected to participate in the event, to be presided-over by the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Olusola Oyewole.
Meanwhile, a Commencement Lecture is to also take place during the Matriculation Ceremony, which would be delivered by Professor Elijah Ayolabi, Vice-Chancellor, Mountain Top University, Ogun State. Title of the lecture is “University Education and National Development”
Arrangements are in top gear for the delivery of the 53rd Inaugural Lecture of the University titled, “Grasses: Production and Management for Sustainable Livestock Industry”. Professor Olufemi Onifade of the Department of Pasture and Range Management, College of Animal Science and Livestock Production (COLANIM), is to deliver the lecture on Wednesday, April 26, 2017, at the FUNAAB Ceremonial Building, beginning at 2 pm. The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Olusola Oyewole, would be the Chairman at the occasion.
The lecture is expected to examine forage as an essential requisite for the growth, development and reproduction of ruminant animals and livestock with a population of over 76 million, as well as highlight the results and applications of the studies conducted on the propagation of pasture seeds, the establishment and management of forage species for conservation purposes and direct grazing by livestock. It would also give information on the status of grazing land in the country and offer suggestions that could reduce the conflicts between herdsmen and crop farmers. The Inaugural Lecturer noted that the differences in the vegetation across the country, make the availability of forage species in the natural pastures to vary throughout the year even though they are abundant during the rainy season, but not readily available during the dry season. In addition, the quantity and quality of the forage species are lower than those from sown pastures; nevertheless, the natural pastures that had been degraded could be managed and improved upon, to enhance higher animal production.
A Professor of Forage Agronomy and Utilisation, Professor Onifade’s research interest covers the evaluation of agronomic and grazing management strategies for pasture production and management. According to the Don, for the country to increase local production of meat, milk, mutton, veal, hides and skins and to have enough to export, it was important that the animals producing these products were adequately fed, so as to bring about an increase in the quantity of animal protein intake by the citizens and providing income for the teeming unemployed youths.
Professor Onifade bagged his Bachelor of Science, Master’s and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria. He has supervised over 90 undergraduate projects, 20 M.Agric Dissertations and four PhD Theses. He had served the University in several capacities, some of which include: Director, Centre for Entrepreneurial Studies (CENTS), 2013 - 2014; Dean, Student Affairs, 2012 - 2013; Acting Head, Department of Pasture and Range Management, 2000 - 2004; Member, Curriculum Committee, 2001 - 2004; Deputy Dean, COLANIM, 2005 - 2009; Chairman, University Loans Committee, 2007 - 2008 and External Examiner for Postgraduate Students at the University of Ibadan, ABU and the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife. The Inaugural Lecturer belongs to several professional bodies and learned societies, some of which include the Animal Science Association of Nigeria; Society for Grassland Research and Development; Nigerian Institute of Animal Scientists (NIAS) and Nigerian Society for Animal Production (NSAP), among others.
The Directorate of Public Relations (DPR) and the Directorate of Internal Audit of the University, have received donations from members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) that served in University, as the DPR also hosted executive members of the FUNAAB Postgraduate Students Association. The corpers said the gesture was their modest way of contributing to the University; being their place of primary assignment. The Batches A and B corps members, who donated the set of door labels to the Directorate, were received by the Head of DPR, Mrs. Emi’ Alawode, who expressed the appreciation of the Directorate for the generosity. Mrs. Alawode had described corps members as national ambassadors in the course of serving their fatherland.
According to the Head of DPR, “FUNAAB is youth-oriented and is among the few institutions that could accept as much as 21 corps members at a go, to serve in the University”, noting that FUNAAB had achieved a lot in terms of academic performance and service delivery, as she charged the corps members to take advantage of the University’s Centre for Entrepreneurial Studies (CENTS), to equip themselves with useful skills that would make them to be job-providers rather than being job-seekers. In terms of providing welfare to corps members, Mrs. Alawode said FUNAAB was one of the higher institutions of learning in Ogun State that accord top priority to the welfare of its corpers, as she encouraged them to always be of good behaviour. Similarly, the Acting Head (now Director) of Internal Audit, Mr. Olufisayo Amubode, lauded the corpers for their generosity.
Responding, the outgone Internal Corpers’ Liaison Officer, Mr. Oladapo Esan, described door labels as symbolic and an easy way for visitors to locate offices. He appreciated the Directorate for its efforts, most especially, for the weekly publication of FUNAAB Bulletin. In a related development, executive members of the FUNAAB Postgraduate Students Association have paid a courtesy visit to the Directorate. The President of the Association, Mr. Samuel Ayoola, lauded the Directorate for its timely dissemination of useful information to members of the University community. Mrs. Alawode was represented at both occasions of hosting the corpers and the postgraduate students by the Assistant Director (Media & External Relations), Mr. Kola Adepoju, who used the opportunity to also explain to the students, the workings of the Directorate of Public Relations within the University system.
The University has recorded another milestone in addition to the previous achievements it had made over the years. This time around, FUNAAB, in partnership with the Natural Resources Institute (NRI), University of Greenwich, United Kingdom, have been selected as the winner of the $500,000 Cassava Innovation Challenge grant, alongside the needed technical assistance, to test and market a polythene bag with an in-built technology that would keep cassava fresh, for at least, eight days after harvesting. The announcement was made at the first All African Post-harvest Congress, held in Nairobi, Kenya.
According to the Director, Directorate of Grants Management of the University, Professor Kolawole Adebayo, The Rockefeller Foundation, in association with Dalberg and the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), put forward a challenge to get an innovation that could extend the shelf-life of cassava. He said cassava remained one of the major staple foods in Africa and being a starchy food crop, it deteriorates very fast if unprocessed within 24 to 72 hours after harvesting, hence, the need for proper preservation. Professor Adebayo, who noted that two different perspectives, previously being considered for the preservation of the crop included processing and that as soon as it was harvested, it becomes something more profitable like garri, cassava flour (elubo) or fufu, adding that once that was done, there was a limit to the kind of product that could be derived from it.
On the other hand, he pointed out that improving the logistics of delivery from the farm to processing was also considered, so as to save as much time as possible, but added that this also had its challenge, as time was lost in harvesting, parking, transporting and offloading products, stressing that breakdown of the vehicle or traffic, could not be ruled out and "once you harvest the cassava, if you don’t use within 24 hours, it starts to lose starch, it starts to lose quality and so, the colour of the product you make from it will not be as white and the Potential of Hydrogen (pH) will be high. Therefore, there is a limit to the kind of product you make from it, and after three to five days, it becomes practically useless for anything else".
The Post-harvest Expert explained that this challenge (perishability), necessitated looking at what really could be done to keep harvested cassava in its fresh form for about a week or eight days, so that it does not get spoilt most, especially, considering the fact that Nigeria is the largest producer of cassava and is also the largest consumer of the crop. Following the challenge, Professor Adebayo disclosed that more than 600 applications from 32 countries submitted their ideas on how to solve this problem; of short shelf-life for cassava, due to lack of preservation technology. A panel of judges from around the world, including Nigerian cassava experts, recommended the grant, based on The Rockefeller Foundation criteria for innovation.
Speaking on the technology, Professor Adebayo said "it is a simple bag. The science of it is easy to understand; as it is being used with other commodities, whereby if you get a particular type of bag that has a particular type of micro-environment, any living plant kept in that bag will remain fresh, so long as the bag is not opened for up to eight days or at least, more than one week. Now, at the laboratory level, this has been demonstrated, but at the commercial level, nobody has ever used it. And there are a number of reasons why people have not used it in the business of cassava processing. It is because it is not a regulated business. So, you cannot say that you should only sell cassava roots in this bag. There is no such regulation anywhere. So, that makes it difficult then".
The Director said what was now done, was to take the bagging technology, which had been developed many years ago and do it in varying sizes. "It is very simple and requires one, who knows the chemistry of growth and preservation. This was the expertise that NRI has brought into the collaboration. We have been collaborating with NRI for 30 years now and we have a lot of knowledge on the transactions that take place in the cassava sector, which will influence the uptake of this bag. We will need additional partners to make this work. We need people, who have the facilities to make bags, we will have to introduce the science, to making those bags a preservative kind of bag and then, we need the value chain, to market the bag for those who will use it. So, over the next one to three years, we will be working on these, using the funds from this global challenge that The Rockefeller Foundation has provided as leverage on how to commercialise this knowledge that has been made available through this collaboration. So, this is the technology and if it works in Nigeria, which is the largest producer of cassava, then it probably will work anywhere in the world".
Explaining the benefits that could be derived from the grant, Professor Adebayo said the collaboration between two universities, anywhere in the world, was always an advantage and a win-win situation. For FUNAAB, he disclosed that "many of our scientists would gain insight into the science of cassava preservation". Describing this achievement as one that is worth celebrating, Professor Adebayo stated that "to be the applicant that was selected (FUNAAB and University of Greenwich), out of 600 applications, is not a small feat. Actually, this is where universities in Nigeria or Africa are different from European universities because now, the University of Greenwich describes itself as a world-leading institution on cassava research. Why can't we do that? We should also celebrate successes and then build on those successes. Once we can do it for cassava, maybe we can do it for yam, sweet potato, carrot and onion as we have several of our scientists working on all these other crops who can learn from these opportunity and then use it". The invention, which won FUNAAB the grant, NRICassavabag, would be of benefit to about 500 million people in Africa, who rely on cassava for food security and nutrition, as nearly 30 million small holder farmers grow over 50 million tonnes annually, which amounts to 20 per cent of the world's population. Meanwhile, the polythene bag would be available in a variety of sizes, for different value chain actors.
Expressing displeasure at the several bottlenecks that researchers in the country face, Professor Adebayo disclosed that "the environment that we work in has not been very helpful. Over the years, we have built the profile of FUNAAB, as a University, to compete with other universities”. He further called for a review of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) policy, noting that it would discourage researchers from grants writing, as the funds would be mopped up, the projects not being realised and would eventually discourage many organisations from financing grants in the country, because such funds would not be readily accessible for the researchers, to achieve their goals and targets.
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Olusola Oyewole, has charged newly-admitted students to be disciplined and hardworking, noting that the University has zero tolerance for indiscipline, laziness and other vices. Stating these, at the 2016/2017 Academic Session Orientation Programme for Fresh Students, Professor Oyewole, noted that the University was committed to producing graduates, who are worthy in learning, character and are academically-sound. He pointed out that the orientation programme was strictly designed to intimate students with the rules, regulations, culture and important information that would enhance their success in the University.
Speaking on the history of University, the Registrar, Mr. Mathew Ayoola, said the Federal University of Agriculture (FUNAAB), formerly known as the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (UNAAB), was established on January 8, 1988 by the Federal Government and that through its relentless efforts, the University had earned the following accolades: Best University in Nigeria in 2005 by the National Universities Commission (NUC); NUC's first place prize as the Best Research University (2004 & 2005); Best University in Nigeria, October 2008 by the Industrial Training Fund; Best University for the Students’ Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES); winner of the Maiden Award at the First National Mathematics Competition; and designation as the World Bank Africa Centre of Excellence in Agriculture, among others.
Mr. Ayoola, who disclosed that the University runs a collegiate system, stated that initially, five Colleges were introduced into the University in October 1988 and was later increased to nine, while adding that one of the nine Colleges; College of Natural Sciences (COLNAS), was split into two, increasing the total number of Colleges in the University to 10.In a presentation on the "Importance of University Education and Expectations of University Students", the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic, Professor Catherine Eromosele, who was represented by the Dean, Student Affairs Division, Professor Adeniyi Olayanju, stated that the knowledge acquired from university education was transformational; creating a more refined individual with an analytical mind and the ability to be a problem-solver. Professor Olayanju also represented the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Development, Professor Ololade Enikuomehin, at the event, to make his presentation titled; "Adaption of University Knowledge to Self-Development", where the students were charged to be open-minded and be versatile in their quest for knowledge and development, stressing that no knowledge was a waste.
Speaking on the topic "Students’ Involvement in Social Activities on Campus", the Dean, Student Affairs stated that every human being has a triune nature namely - spirit, body and soul - which should be properly developed for them to become complete individuals. He advised that, as a spirit, students should be involved in religious and activities; as a soul or mind, they should be involved in social or academic activities, to develop their souls, such as belonging to Departmental and College associations, Students’ Union activities and other legally-recognised clubs such as the Red Cross, Man O’ War, FUNAAB Drama Troupe, Boys’ Brigade and Road Safety; while as a body, they should be engaged in physical development by exercising, observing good hygiene and eating balanced diet. The Dean further encouraged the students to endeavour to keep themselves busy and productively engage themselves at all times, warning that an idle hand is the devil’s workshop.
The University Librarian, Dr. Mulikat Salaam, who was represented by Mr. Wasiu Lawal, enlightened the fresh students on the use of the library and the various facilities they could benefit from such, like the 24-hour library services. She disclosed that the library was like any other standard organisation that had its own rules and regulations, as she charged the students to abide by the relevant library rules. On Students’ Union activities, the immediate past President of the FUNAAB Students’ Union, Comrade Dennis Nwenonye, stated that activities of FUNAABSU were different and unique because thuggery and any other social ills are not allowed. "Here, we practice sensible student unionism", as he admonished the fresh students to abide by stipulated rules and regulations, regularly visit the Office of the Dean, Student Affairs as well as FUNAABSU, for necessary questions, answers and clarifications.
The Principal Assistant Registrar, Guidance and Counselling, Mrs. Modesta Ofodile, in her presentation on, "Decent Dressing and Image of the University", disclosed that the University attached great importance to decent dressing, because it believes that an individual's mode of dressing adds value to his/her personality, self-confidence and self-worth. Defining dressing as the art of wearing clothes, the Principal Assistant Registrar described what constitutes ideal dressing to "include clothing neatly made, moderately fitting and long, covering the upper and lower torso. Hairstyles neatly cut or made fitting, moderate, not flamboyant or constituting disturbance to the user or the public, as well as the footwear that is neat, smart, easy for mobility, strong and comfortable while make-ups should be moderately done". She enjoined the students to take their studies seriously, in order to make good grades at the end of their courses and shun defiant behaviours. Mrs. Bolanle Olaleye and Mrs. Modesta Ofodile, who spoke on; “Effective Method of Studying in the University, Cult Activities and Other Self-Defeating Behaviours of Students on Campus”, called on the students to pay absolute attention to their studies.
Mrs. Olaleye identified the reasons for poor academic performance, to be include; poor time management, misuse of modern technology, absenteeism, procrastination, studying of irrelevant materials, lackadaisical attitude and studying in places of distraction, while Mrs. Ofodile described cultism as self-defeating behaviour, which could have adverse effects on the lives of people. She charged the students to secure their future by not yielding to the deceptive lies and tricks that cultists often use to lure people away. To buttress the dangers of cultism, a true-life experience was shared by a renounced cultist, Evangelist Daniel Osita, who described cultism as a world of darkness that leaves victims with nothing at the end of the day, but only regrets.
On her part, the Deputy Registrar II, Senate and Admissions, Mrs. Oluwatoyin Dawodu, gave the students useful tips on course registration, rules, regulations, course unit system and the Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) grading in the University. She charged the students to give priority to their studies during their early years, because at the end, all prescribed courses would be computed as the final CGPA, for degree classifications.
Other speakers include the Acting Director of Sports, Dr. Samuel Olabanji, who tasked the students not to hide their talents, but should come to the FUNAAB Sports’ Centre, to display such, which could earn them success in life, while Mrs. Adesumbo Laniyan of the Service Compact With All Nigerians (SERVICOM) Unit of the University, informed the students that they deserved to be served rightly and that they should not hesitate to report any observations that bordered on service failure, using the complaint boxes on campus.
The Director, FUNAAB Bureau of Transportation (FUNAABOT), Dr. Ismaila Salami, reeled out the rules and regulations guiding the operations of the students’ buses and the proper conduct that is expected of the students, while boarding any of the buses. On security matters, the Assistant Chief Environmental Officer, Mr. Bolarinwa Peters, noted that there were likely security threats everywhere. He, therefore, charged the students to be security conscious, avoid going to dangerous places, especially at nights, while a representative of the Bursary Department, Mr. Oloyede Azeez, educated the fresh students on how to make the various payments, from the College level, through the College Accountants and other payments, using the online system, put in place by the University.
Speaking on the “Importance of Examinations and Records Unit in the University”, the Principal Assistant Registrar/Head of the Unit, Mr. Moses Ayanda, admonished the students that, while filling forms to be submitted, they should make sure that adequate and correct information were stated, as failure could cost them their studentship. In her presentation titled, “Listening Skill”, a lecturer in the Communication and General Studies Department (CGNS), Dr. Abosede Sotiloye, charged the students to listen more and speak less, noting that listening is not the same as hearing, which involves the active participation of the receiver. She described listening as an important aspect of effective communication, adding that it was the ability to hear, identify and understand what had been said.
Delivering a lecture titled, “Sustaining FUNAAB’s Beautiful Environment”, the Coordinator, Directorate of Environmental Management (DEM), Mr. Babafunso Idowu, highlighted the regulations that the students should abide with while in the University, saying that they were not to cross the lawn; always use the comfort stations and desist from littering the environment. He added that the University was using a whopping sum of money to maintain the environment annually, as he urged the students to help preserve it.
Enlightening the freshers on what the Information and Communications Resource Centre (ICTREC) was doing, the former Head, Deputy Director, Dr. Olutayo Ajayi, said that the processes of Continuing Assessment Tests (CATs) and examinations were computerised, from the point of admission up to the point of semester results. In his presentation, the Acting Director, University Health Services, Dr. Abiodun Amusan, stated that the University had put in place, remarkable efforts to provide sound health services on campus, adding that students had also been adequately protected under health insurance scheme.
The representative of the Directorate of Public Relations, Mrs. Rosemary Egbuonu, disclosed that the basic function of the Directorate was to maintain mutual understanding between the University and its internal and external stakeholders. She urged the students to be conscious of their actions because they are also involved in public relations, directly or indirectly. In her lecture, the representative of the Director, Directorate of Technologists and Technical Staff (DITTECS) and the Chief Laboratory Scientist, Mrs. Kemi Fashina, charged the students to be punctual at practicals, adding that laboratory safety was key to reducing injury and illness, as she noted that there were many exposures in the laboratory that posed serious health hazards.
The Director, Centre for Entrepreneurial Studies (CENTS), Professor Adewale Dipeolu, charged the fresh students to take advantage of the opportunity offered by the Centre to develop skills outside their core-courses of study in the University. Professor Dipeolu encouraged the students to build themselves by learning a skill, which could be their source of livelihood in future. He listed some of the skills available at CENTS to include tailoring, shoe-making, artwork, catering, events planning, fisheries, agriculture and modeling, among others.
Issues relating to hostel and accommodation matters were not left out, as the Hall Wardens; Professor Taofeek Shittu and Dr. Remi Aduradola, enlightened the students while the Student Affairs’ Division, represented by Mr. Segun Ogunyemi, reeled-out the relevant University rules and regulations, as matters bothering on sexual life, chastity, coping with peer pressure and counselling services, were also highlighted at the occasion. Meanwhile, the FUNAAB Theatre Troupe presented a drama titled; titled "Life on Campus" at the orientation programme.