October 06, 2021
AN ADDRESS BY THE VICE-CHANCELLOR, PROFESSOR IKECHUKWU NOSIKE SIMPLICIUS DOZIE TO THE MAIDEN GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE KINGSLEY OZUMBA MBADIWE UNIVERSITY (KOMU) OGBOKO, IMO STATE, NIGERIA ON 5TH OCTOBER, 2021.
Principal Officers of the University
Deans and Directors
Members of the University Senate
Members of Congregation
Respected Staff and Students of the University
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen
It is with deep humility, sincere gratitude to God Almighty and a committed sense of responsibility that I address you today as the Vice-Chancellor of Kingsley Ozumba Mbadiwe University (KOMU), Ogboko, Ideato South LGA, Imo State, Nigeria. I am happy to familiarize with you all as members of the University Community.
Permit me to begin this address with a note of deep appreciation to His Excellency, Senator Hope Uzodimma, Governor of Imo State for finding me worthy to serve and consequently approved my appointment as Vice-Chancellor of this young but would be historic university. I wish to assure His Excellency once again, that I will remain committed and uphold the confidence associated with my appointment as Vice-Chancellor in the discharge of this responsibility. I am not unmindful of the challenges we face in growing KOMU to be an institution of repute and reckoning and a first choice destination for our teeming youths seeking world-class education and qualitative mentorship. I am confident that by the special grace of God and the assured support of government as well as various stakeholders, we shall succeed in our task. We will always support the “3-R Vision” of His Excellency aimed at the Rehabilitation, Reconstruction and Rebuilding of Imo State to be a model modern State through our activities in KOMU.
PURPOSE OF A UNIVERSITY
The purpose of a university is to create knowledge through scholarship and research, transmit knowledge through instruction (i.e. teaching) and lastly, apply knowledge through public service. In other words, universities are created to satisfy specific or general educational needs of a nation through teaching of students, conduct of research and dissemination of knowledge together with other community activities. Therefore, the primary mission of the university is simply, teaching, research and community service.
ESTABLISHMENT OF KOMU
As you are aware, KOMU came into existence through the enactment of the Kingsley Ozumba (KO) Mbadiwe University (Establishment) Law No. 1 of 2021 by the Imo State House of Assembly and assented to by His Excellency, Governor Hope Uzodimma on 18th February, 2021. This Law repealed the Eastern Palm University which was established in 2016 and recognized by the National Universities Commission (NUC) as the 42nd State University and 143rd in the Nigerian University System. Statutorily, Kingsley Ozumba University has replaced the defunct Eastern Palm University
The mandate of KOMU is, “to encourage the advancement of learning in Imo State in particular and Nigeria in general, to hold out to all persons without the distinction of race, creed or sex and to give them the opportunity of acquiring higher education in various fields of study”.
The specific objectives of the university are to:
a. Provide a wide range of quality learning opportunities for undergraduate and postgraduate students without distinction of race, creed, sex, religion or political conviction that will enhance their best intellectual, social, economic and personal development;
b. Provide academic, professional and vocational training of high quality in a way as to enrich and improve the State, National, and International human resource capabilities and assist graduates to contribute to the common good of society;
c. Foster academic research, which contributes to human knowledge and the vitality of the institution;
d. Encourage thoughtful and responsible staff and student participation in Local, State, National and International affairs;
e. Maintain the highest academic standards in respect of University degrees and other awards and preserve and protect their reputation and integrity;
f. Evolve academic programmes to suit the changing social and economic needs of society through continuous review of curricula and development of new programmes to respond to societal and technological changes in Nigeria and the world in general and Imo State in particular;
g. Advance human culture and improve human life through the development, refinement and dissemination of knowledge and to prepare competent graduates to meet the development needs of Imo State in particular and Nigeria in general;
h. Relate its activities to the social, cultural and economic needs of the people of Imo State and Nigeria.
Distinguished colleagues, the successful achievement of the objectives of establishment are clearly the task before us. It is significant that the Law establishing KOMU recognizes the sensitivities and semblance of the character of world-class universities namely qualitative teaching and mentorship, innovative and cutting edge research, knowledge transfer and international/global outlook.
For more simplistic emphasis, we all are expected to build a university which in concept and operation is akin to a marketplace of ideas, diversity of thought, culture and perspectives, which are in conformity with the global character of leading universities. We all are expected to grow a university where the ethos of teamwork, respect, integrity, excellence, ethics, professionalism, equity, justice, inclusion, innovation and collaboration will characterize her style and sense of direction. Furthermore, we are expected to build a university with open door policy and governed by the time-tested Committee system which enhances the participation of everyone and which her leadership style leaves no one in doubt about her direction and trajectory for her future development to a world-class status.
VISION, MISSION, PHILOSOPHY, CORE VALUES, MANTRA, MOTTO AND LOGO
The vision of the Kingsley Ozumba University is to be a globally competitive institution renowned for innovative research and scholarship, world-class education and human resource development to address current and future needs of society.
The mission is to make KOMU famous for producing talented men and women with passion and skills to apply knowledge and technology sensibly to solve the problems of the nation and the global community at large.
At the core of this mission is our firm desire to educate future leaders not just to acquire requisite knowledge and various life survival skills, but leaders with deep passion for humanity in the discharge of their civic responsibilities for the good of society i.e. “developing the complete man – soul, body and divinity”
In KOMU, we are driven by a strong determination to produce scholars who are loaded with triple capacity for success, global competitiveness and stardom anchored on our core values of integrity, excellence, team work, innovation and collaboration.
Our core values to drive our vision and actualize our mission will be anchored on integrity, excellence, team work, innovation and collaboration [IETIC].
§ Integrity: We shall strive to be honest, respectful, transparent, accountable, fair and equitable in our dealings
§ Excellence: We will ensure best practices, adopt meritocracy and apply the highest ethical standards in our activities inclusive of preserving the natural environment
§ Team work: We shall work closely and inclusively with each other and one another, communicating openly to achieve common goals
§ Innovation: We shall strive to be creative, harnessing our innate transformative energy for the good of the environment and the society in a responsible manner.
§ Collaboration: We shall build viable and strong bonds of friendship with similar organizations for mutual benefit.
Our mantra will be: “Our university working as a team with one mission to render selfless service to humanity” a.k.a. “KOMU. One team. One mission. Selfless service to humanity”.
Selfless Service to Humanity
The Logo is made up of a book, a graduation cap, and the globe with stars dotted around it, all housed by the name of the University. Beneath the name of the University is the Motto. The narrative is that the University as a hub of academic activity uses the book as a tool for learning to produce scholars who become stars around the globe.
The colours of the University as shown in the Logo are black, blue and golden. Symbolically, the black colour represents the power and authority of Senate as the highest decision-making body to organize and control teaching, promote research as well as admission and discipline of students. The blue colour represents the sky as the limit for our staff and students in their quest for excellence and scholarship. The golden colour represents the wisdom and passion of members of our community in rendering selfless service to humanity.
IMPLEMENTATION OF MY VISION AND MISSION
The strategy for implementation of my vision and mission for accelerated transformation of KOMU to a world class institution addresses holistically all aspects of university endeavour. These have been clearly integrated into an eleven (11) point strategic goal as follows:
1. Promoting Qualitative Teaching and Learning and Mentorship to achieve First Class Education and Graduate Output at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.
2. Cultivating a Culture of Sustainable Innovative and Cutting-edge Research and Entrepreneurship Education to address societal problems.
3. Mainstreaming Information and Communications Technology (ICT) for Digital Transformation and Efficient Service Delivery
4. Expanding Access with Innovative Programmes and Sustaining Existing Academic Programmes as well as Strengthening Academic Support Units for Improved Excellence.
5. Providing Clean, Reliable and Steady Electricity and Strengthening other Municipal Services for Institutional Development.
6. Improving Physical and Security Infrastructure and Promoting a Healthy, Safe and Aesthetic Environment for Conducive Education.
7. Building Strategic Partnerships and Collaborations for Improved University Ranking and Overall Global Outlook
8. Creating Excellent Relationships with Staff and Student Unions, Alumni, Host Communities and various Stakeholders (State Government Agencies, NUC, JAMB, TETFund, NCC, CVC etc) for University Advancement
9. Creating University Strategic Businesses Units/Commercial Ventures and Consultancy Services for improved Fund Generation
10. Improving Institutional Governance and Financial Management Systems as well as University Internal Control Mechanisms for Sustainable Growth.
11. Improving Human Resource Development and Management for Greater Efficiency and Overall University Development.
My overall vision will be to provide academic, professional and vocational training of high quality, ensuring their integrity and reputation and producing graduates who will compete with their peers in any part of the world. To give effect to this vision, we will develop a Strategic Plan for the University that will provide a rational, comprehensive and holistic guide to the growth and development of the University within a five (5) year period. This will be premised on identification and prioritization of our needs, mobilization of human and financial resources to attend to these needs within the specified time-frame.
In particular, we shall mobilize resources in the area of academic development to ensure that all existing and future programmes in the University receive full accreditation as and when due both by the National Universities Commission (NUC) and different Professional Regulatory bodies.
SUPPORT OF STAKEHOLDERS
As we all know, the human factor is the most critical in the attainment of any developmental effort. Accordingly, to drive our vision of accelerating our progress to be an institution of global repute, we will on a continuous basis engage, train, re-train and motivate our human resource both staff and students to achieve desired results. Each of us must be purposeful, focussed, committed, pro-active, resourceful and have result-oriented mindset. It is important to note that we shall appreciate and reward results and not efforts. On our part as Management, we shall ensure that staff and students welfare are given top priority.
At this juncture, i must state that the achievement of our set objectives for sustainable development of our University cannot be realized without mutual trust, peace and stability. I sincerely appeal to everyone, staff, students, traditional rulers and members of the host communities and other stakeholders to create the conducive atmosphere for teaching, learning and community service. We must allow God to lead us in oneness of purpose, in a spirit of love, friendship and fraternity, unity and mutual co-existence as we conduct the business of grooming the next generation of leaders for their families, our dear State Imo, our country Nigeria and for the global community. This is simply my mission as Vice-Chancellor.
I must emphasize that COVID-19 has left its devastating impact on the global economy including the education system. As we plan to introduce measures for safe education for our students in the future as well as safety of our staff, we must at the present observe all established COVID-19 protocol including mandatory mask policy, hand hygiene, use of sanitizers, social distancing, vaccination etc. Unlike the first and second waves of infection, the on-going third wave of infection by the Delta variant is stealthily having a devastating toll on our population, killing many people and spreading widely. We must remain vigilant and take all necessary precautions.
HISTORY IN PERSPECTIVES
History in its fair sense recognizes that KO Mbadiwe University as a new institution of learning took root from the defunct Eastern Palm University which was established in 2016. To the glory of God and the lasting ingenuity of her founding Fathers, we inherited staff and students and above all met very good infrastructure as well as processes and extant and cherished traditions of a university. Hence, the environment is already fertile for greater exploits. Therefore, credit must be given to everyone who played a role in the establishment and management of the defunct Eastern Palm University, particularly His Excellency Owelle Rochas Okorocha, the former Governor of Imo State and Visitor to Eastern Palm University. Thus, without equivocation, I must say that aided by the grace of God and our dedication to duty, we are committed to upgrading this history met on ground to an enviable height, hence, leaving a culture far better than we met it.
Finally, I am confident that with your total commitment and loyalty and absolute trust and abiding faith in God Almighty our merciful father, we shall succeed in the transformation of Kingsley Ozumba Mbadiwe University to world-class status. For in the words of the Psalmist in Chapter 127 verse 1, “if the Lord does not build the house, the work of the builder is useless”.
Thank you and May God bless us all.
Professor Ikechukwu Nosike Simplicius Dozie KSM, JP
BSc; MSc (Nigeria); PhD (Jos);
FPPSN; FNSM, FAIPH, FPCEHSN; ASIF; FSEPHON