by Adeniyi Abdul
Former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo has decried the state of higher institutions in the country, particularly the repeated occurrences of strikes. Speaking at the presentation of a book, From Excellence to Distinction: The University of Lagos on World’s Intellectual Map, written by Prof. Oyewusi Ibidapo-Obe, where he was guest of honour, Obasanjo stated that the country has what it takes to take it’s universities to the top rankings among others in the world, but various steps have to be taken.
The former president said:
“We as a nation have what it takes, both human and natural resources, to make our universities rank among the best in the world. In any institution, those who are at the helm of affairs must strive to do their work and administer without fear or favour.
“There must be discipline in the use of every thing at their disposal in order to achieve their set goals. After all we now have a Nigerian who is amongst the 51 best in the world, in terms of economic standing.
“We must try to develop and encourage what we have for us to be able to achieve our collective goal as a nation. I believe in the Chinese saying that the journey of 1,000 miles starts with the first step but such step must be in the right direction.
“This position is only a first step and must continue in that direction. We are also saying that if we do the right thing, we would have peace and development.
“I want to commend Prof. Ibidapo-Obe for this achievement and for his contributions in making university of Lagos what it is today. I remember how he fought hard to minimise strikes amongst students and staff in the university during his era as Vice-Chancellor”