The Registrar, Dr. ‘Bola Adekola has revealed that the secret behind the seamless and smooth administrative functioning of the University during the lockdown and the gradual easing of lockdown directives by the Federal and State governments was due to the transition of the FUNAAB Registry Department from paper operation to automation. The Registrar said that most of the work done during the lockdown period was carried out online and from home. Dr. Adekola noted that prior to the Presidential directive for a total lockdown in Ogun State, FUNAAB was already adhering to the safety protocols announced by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) by reducing the number of staff working on campus while also providing hand-washing materials and sanitizers alongside temperature-monitoring equipment.
The Registrar noted that since his assumption in to office and with the support of the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Kolawole Salako, he has continuously been moving operations of the Registry online, especially in those areas dealing with the outside world. “By Aligning with online operations, FUNAAB was very fortunate and it really paid off during the lockdown. For instance, we have been operating e-transcript and e-registration before now. So, it really made the work easier during the holidays”, he said. He further stated that some of the directives given by the Vice-Chancellor and Principal Officers were implemented online. The University Management, according to him, had embraced online technology in the last two years of the current administration. Dr. Adekola noted that COVID-19 is an eye-opener and this prompted the University Management to put up a plan by making sure that all administrative activities go digital to ensure easy and smooth running of the University with or without any pandemic, adding that the world was now going digital and “We are moving with the world so that we are not left behind”.
The Registrar said the computerisation of the Registry was being done one after the other with the support of the Vice-Chancellor. “We have succeeded in writing a good software for Senate members, which has made it possible for proceedings to be sent to a particular platform thereby reducing the cost of conducting Senate meetings”, he added. Dr. Adekola said one of the recent breakthroughs of e-platforms was that First Semester results had been approved through e-result and that computerisation had been extended to the Examinations and Records Unit such that once Senate approves results, no editing can be done on it, as the platform would automatically be locked and once students graduate, they would no longer have access to the website. He assured that the University would give each graduating student a statement of result and an e-transcript upon graduation, after which he/she can apply for the hard copy, if needed.
For the e-transcript application, he said applicants would receive responses from the University within a short period of one week, as the University now has mutual understanding with one of the leading transcript-receiving organisations; World Education Services (WES), where most of the people travelling to the United States of America and Canada visit for the verification of their credentials. Dr. Adekola informed that the Staff Establishment Matters Unit would not be left behind, as staff records are to be updated and digitalised while staff requests would be attended to with dispatch, noting that “We are also looking forward to having an e-cabinet where personnel information can be seen at a glance”. The Registrar revealed that the university is also considering the use of virtual classes for students as soon as they resume. On the sustainability of the digital projects, he disclosed that staff members would be properly trained and retrained to ensure continuity even after the present administration.