Despite odds and challenges, the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, has normalized its Academic Calendar, with the conclusion of its second semester examinations for the 2010/2011 session, on June 15, 2011.
Senate is expected to consider and approve the results on Tuesday, July 6, 2011 after which the various Heads of Departments are expected to immediately paste the approved results.
The University will proceed on its long vacation from Wednesday, July 6 to resume for the 2011/2012 session on Monday, October 3, 2011.
Investigations by UNAAB Bulletin revealed divergent opinions on specific events that led to the disruption of the calendar across universities in Nigeria, but however with a consensus that chain of events, ranging from student boycott of lecture, local and national issues, spanning over two decades, were responsible.
Efforts to hitherto arrest the ugly trend, had achieved very little success as the Acting Registrar, Mr. Adeleke Adeboye observed, “Sessions were cancelled at a time by all Universities, in a bid to normalize. This failed to achieve results, except in very few Universities, with UNAAB now happily joining the league of achievers”.
However, UNAAB has been able to overcome the attendant hiccups of the disruption while other Universities are still battling hard to adjust and restore their academic calendar.
The highly elated Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic, Professor Chryss Onwuka, enthused that the achievement “has taken three to four years, to plan normalization and make-up for lost grounds. Both staff and students at various times, had to shorten their holidays, in order to adjust the calendar.
All things being equal, students can now be admitted to UNAAB at a definite time and graduate within a definite time frame as well. It is a good and perfectly stable development”. He added.
Commendation was not in want for the determination of the Management to correct the anomaly in the academic calendar as the Director of Academic Planning, Prof. Waheed, ascribed the feat to purposeful vision and commitment of the Management as well as “the understanding of academic staff in sacrificing their leave”.
Corroborating the Director, the University’s Branch Chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, Dr. Olusiji Sowande said, “To achieve the normalization, we deferred our leaves for three sessions.
Also reacting, the President of the Student Union, Comrade Bamgbade Kareem said, “We sincerely appreciate the fact that our academic calendar has been restored because students were at the receiving end when the restoration was being processed. We were drilled, we were stretched full length but now we are happy to have a regularized calendar, we can now heave a sigh of relief”.
The President said the student will shun any act, capable of truncating the academic calendar, again.
Meanwhile, the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Oluwafemi Olaiya Balogun, has extended appreciation to all members of the University Community, for their collective and individual efforts which paid dividend in the achievement of the regularized calendar.
Professor Balogun said the high level of perseverance, patriotism and sacrifice, exhibited by both staff and students during the process of re-alignment was commendable and should be emulated by others to positively position the education sector for its role in national socio-economic development.
A staff who craved anonymity was quick to observe that the Vice-Chancellor should “specially celebrate”. According to him, “The VC should be more thrilled by the development. If you take into reckoning that students admitted in 2007 on his assumption of office, with four-year programme, will be part of next Convocation. They are lucky, don’t you think? They ran their programmes undisrupted, they should be called the ‘Balogun Set’.
Prof. Oluwafemil Balogun