BY GBENGA OLARINOYE
OSOGBO — OBAFEMI Awolowo University, OAU, Ile-Ife, has been rated the first and best university in Nigeria and 14th in Africa by the Webometric Ranking of world universities.
In the last rating, the university was ranked eighth in Nigeria and 79 in Africa.
According to Webometric ranking released on February 6, 2013, OAU was rated above other universities in the country for its intellectual, academic, research and administrative supremacy.
A release by the Public Relations Officer of the University, Mr. Abiodun Olarewaju, said this latest ranking reflected the success of the current University Administration under Professor Bamitale Omole.
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Omole pledged to do all within his administrative power and academic experience to further reposition the institution to meet with the standard expected of a world class University within the context of 21st century intellectual market.
Meantime, staff of the OAU have been advised to set a new road map to pursue research effort more vigorously with a view to continually impacting positively on the socio-economic, political and technological landscapes of the society.
Professor Omole gave the advice at a one-day retreat organized by the Staff Training and Development Unit of the Institution at Iloko-Ijesa, Osun State.
In the keynote address titled: “Moving This Leviathan: New Paradigm, New Strategies: 50 years of OAU and Beyond”, the Vice-Chancellor enjoined the participants not to dwell too much on the past achievements but strive to break new grounds in research and development.
Omole reminded the participants not to forget the best practices, ethics and ethos as well as the institutional core values which made the university “past scientific achievements possible and which had made OAU a centre of Academic Excellence.”
While expressing serious concern over administrative and academic malpractices which have bedeviled the Nigerian University system, the VC added that vices like admission racketeering, examination malpractices, misuse of research grants, misallocation and misappropriation of funds, sexual harassment, financial or material inducement before services are rendered should be discouraged and eradicated in the University.
According to him: “As an Institution, we should, at all times, consider it an aberration to protect and defend our colleagues who are found in indecent behaviours and a variety of corrupt practices. We should not allow the little foxes to spoil the vine.”