The former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai (retd.) on Saturday was conferred with the award of Honorary Degree, Doctor of International Relations and Strategic Studies, Honoris Causa, by Igbinedion University Okada (IUO) at the just concluded 21st Convocation Ceremony.
Other recipients conferred with the University’s Honourary Degree include Former Edo Chief Judge, Justice Joe Acha (retd.), who bagged the Doctor of Laws (LLD) Honoris Causa.
Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Senator Dr. George Akume, delivering the 2nd Convocation Lecture on the topic, “Public and Private Sector Intervention in Tertiary Education in Nigeria: Stimulus for Innovative Research and Development”, said tertiary education needs strengthening particularly in the area of funding and infrastructural development.
Akume said frequent strikes in public tertiary institutions by academic and non-academic staff also disrupt learning in the tertiary education landscape.
The SGF called for collaboration between the Public and Private Sector players to help fund and upgrade facilities in public tertiary institutions in the country.
Akume equally urged alumni of Alma mater to be responsive by way of supporting infrastructure and research initiatives towards a thriving tertiary education system.
In his remark, Vice-Chancellor, Igbinedion University Okada (IUO) Prof. Lawrence Ezemonye said the University since inception has graduated over 16,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students.
“To improve on the visibility of the University in the area of research and innovation, the university has also joined the Web of Science, Google Scholar, Research gate and Academia to increase the international visibility of all research work done by academic staff.
“Based on the success of 2023, IUO is now planning an expansion into other education regions to better strengthen its internationalization strategy. As such, four major international partnership and engagement trips are planned for 2024.”, Ezemonye said.
In his goodwill message, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Tajudeen Abbas, represented by Chairman House Committee on Education, Abubakar Hassan Fulata hailed the institution for providing world-class education to Nigerians.
Speaking after the conferment of the Honourary Degree on the awardees, former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai (retd.) said the award is a testimony of his hardwork, dedication and unwavering commitment to service of fatherland. He also lauded the Esama of Benin, Sir Chief Gabriel Igbinedion for being a visionary who scored first in many landmarks in education, aviation, others and also for being a detribalised leader and philanthropy. Buratai also appreciated the Emir of Biu for leading a high powered delegates to witness the epoch making honour. The Former Edo Chief Judge, Justice Joe Acha (retd.), appreciated the institution for the prestigious honour.
In his own remarks, the deputy chancellor of the prestigious institution, His Excellency, Chief Dr. Lucky Igbinedion showered encomium on Buratai attesting to the fact that Buratai has been one of the most supportive partners of the university.