Health officials attending to port workers at Tin Can Port in Lagos during the Abidjan-Lagos Corridor Trade and Transport Facilitation Project [HIV Component] campaign last week
Barring any unforeseen circumstances academic activities at the Nigerian Maritime University (NMU), Okerenkoko, in Warri South-West Local Government Area of Delta State, will commence in April this year.
This was made known recently by the vice chancellor of the institution, Professor Ongoebi Maureen Etebu, at the Kurutie take-off campus where about 1,300 prospective academic staff shortlisted from over 6,000 applications were interviewed for recruitment.
It was gathered that 17 panelists drawn from various universities in the country conducted the interview at Kurutie, with a representative of the Federal Character Commission (FCC), Mr Owojaiye Samson, on ground to ensure that the quota system was strictly adhered to you.
The vice chancellor, who stressed that academic session would commence mid-April, said, “We are 100 per cent set for the takeoff of academic activities.
“The Federal Government has graciously given us funds and all facilities are in place. We don’t have any challenge thus far. The Federal Government is solidly behind us, so we are good to commence academic activities.”
Professor Etebu thanked the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) for the one-week extension it granted to enable the Maritime University forward its students’ admission list to the body.
He commended the Federal Government for approving the institution, which she said would open up the area and Nigeria for growth, economically and otherwise.
Deputy executive secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), Professor Chiedu Mafiana, was also on hand during the recruitment exercise at the weekend.
He said: “We are here to see the smooth conduct of the interview of prospective academic staff for the takeoff of the Maritime University, Okerenkoko, which the Federal Government has directed.
“I am delighted that despite the riverine nature of the environment, people from across the nation indicated interest and came for the interview in a bid to contribute their quota to the advancement of education.”
After several postponements and rancour that trailed the approval and location of the university, hundreds of prospective applicants thronged the campus for interviews at the weekend.
Some of the applicants who spoke with journalists expressed hope and happiness at the new development.
“There is nothing like the feeling in the air now,” one of the applicants, Ebiakpor Francis, enthused.
Ebiakpor, who holds a Ph.D in Marine Biology from an Australian university, said, “Nothing will certainly stop me from being successful in the tests and interviews.”
One of the natives of the area, Elder Samuel, who identified himself as a retired teacher, said “Today is a new day; a new dawn and I am very happy to be alive today to witness it.”*Vanguard