Four hundred and eighty (480) graduands at the weekend received Postgraduate
degrees and diplomas of the University of Nigeria in what the Vice-Chancellor,
Professor Benjamin Ozumba, described as “the highest by any Nigerian university
in one year.”
The university also conferred honorary doctorate degrees on three distinguished
Nigerians. The Group Managing Director of Access Bank Herbert Wigwe, former
Executive Secretary of the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency
(PPPRA) Mr. Reginald Chika Stanley, and the Managing Director of the Dozzy
Group, Sir Daniel Chukwudozie, who bagged the degrees, said they felt ‘greatly
honoured’ to be associated with the University of Nigeria in such capacity.
Ozumba, in an exclusive chat with The Guardian, said the honour conferred on the
three Nigerians was “not a knee-jerk decision” but a product of careful
appraisal of their contribution to the nation and mankind.
He specifically pointed out Wigwe’s successful efforts in moving Access Bank to
its “present status as one of the top banks-from 16th position to number six in
just 10 years.” He said the banker’s idea of establishing a Chair for the
university was worthy of emulation.
The vice chancellor also described Reginald Stanley as a successful Nigerian who
served the country as a technocrat and has, since his retirement, continued to
make positive impact in the private sector.
Ozumba said the third awardee, Chukwudozie, was a philanthropist who had made
immense contribution to the growth and welfare of many Nigerians.
At least, 480 of the 2,113 graduands, who was conferred with postgraduate
degrees of the university by the Chancellor, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan
Ogunwusi Akande, were Ph.D candidates.
Eleven retired professors of UNN, one of who were Professor Uche Azikiwe, the
wife of the founder and wife of Nigeria’s first president, the late Nnamdi
Azikiwe, were elevated to the university’s club of “Emeritus Professors of the
University of Nigeria.”
The 480 doctorate degree awardees represent 22.7 percent of the 2,113
postgraduates who, like their 9,702 first degree and diploma counterparts, had
fulfilled the standard requirements of character and learning as stipulated in
the school’s regulations.