AFAS PRESS: Good day sir. Kindly highlight your plans for the session.

DEAN: For me, all offices are for service and that implies that we are here to serve the faculty. With reference to the plans we have, it’s a huge one. It derives from the vision and mission of University of Ibadan to be a world class citadel of learning. World class citadel of learning implies that you have interest in the welfare of students who are the products. We consider a university as a company and we produce products that we expect consumers to consume. We produce quality students which by implication are global students. You can’t have an institution of world class standard without having certain elements in place. Aside from having world class students with the instrumentalities of JAMB and others, you need to have world class academic staff, world class members of faculty. You can’t have all of these without a world class environment. When you get to the universities outside this country, in the West or in Asia or in Africa, South Africa and Egypt in North Africa, you feel like you are in the United States of America. So, when you talk about having quality products for the world which implies having quality graduates, it takes quality staff as well as quality environment. We want a faculty we would all be proud of. You have a friend coming from the University of Cape Town, the University of Hong Kong, you will be proud to say come to my faculty, come to my department. In other to achieve this, we need to go back to the first two elements. If you say you want a quality environment, students should also have an idea of living or learning in a quality environment. You can’t have a faculty without the stake holders, beginning from the students .We are all here for the students. We are like employees. Indeed, we are employees of the Federal government to service the students. So we want to have a very beautiful faculty where academic excellence will merge into quality character, will merge into high morality in the way they talk, in the way they comport themselves, in the way they relate with the environment.

AFAS PRESS: Can you highlight the changes we should be expecting, starting with the new building behind the CLA annex block?

DEAN: Once we get there— Yorubas will say “until you succeed in having authority, you can’t begin to demand what went wrong”. That does not mean we do not have an idea of what is happening within the faculty. That block is meant to be a block of offices for staff. There are colleagues who have challenges about office spaces. There are departments in need of expansion. There’s not a specific date of delivery. As it is said in medicine, the expected date of delivery is next year. We hope it won’t extend.
On the other hand, we have filed up a number of programmes for the next one to two months. Since we came in last week, we’ve been working to ensure that water flows in the toilets, to ensure that the toilets speak of our vision. We can’t do that except we have you (students) on board. Immediate actions will be taken to ensure that we have a town hall by next week or upper week. We will invite all members of the faculty. The contractor in charge of faculty cleaning will be there. We want to raise issues. Students use the toilets and do not do the needful. Some deliberately destroy facilities. Lecture room are meant for lectures. Some have turned lecture halls to cafeteria. You see remnants of groundnuts, biscuit wrapper and banana peel.

We are also going to have a programme called Humanities Innovation Challenge. It is possible you have an idea that can change the world. We are going to call for an abstract of 200 words. We want to nurture creativity. For the final year, we would have entrepreneurial workshop, asides from other programmes we have for the faculty. We are also going to have a programme called STAT- Students Today, Alumni Tomorrow. We want to launch a budget for the faculty that every final year student will be a part of say one naira so that in the next five or ten years you will be proud to say you were party to it. So I am using this opportunity to invite everyone to the town hall. If you know critical stakeholders in the larger society who could be of assistance to the faculty in all areas, we will be glad to receive them. Any idea you think is of value to this faculty, the sub dean is there to listen to you.

AFAS PRESS: Apart from the toilets, are there other measures in place for the lecture rooms whose seats are as bad as they can be?

DEAN: We noticed that some seats in the faculty are ‘unsitable’. The sub dean has received quotations from those that would repair the chairs and in the next two weeks, you will begin to see results.

AFAS PRESS: What about the LLT sir?

DEAN: Including the LLT too. I was at the English Language Clinic and wanted to sit on one of the chairs. I appreciate beauty, aesthetics, and elegance. Everything pertaining to students’ comfort is of concern to us.

AFAS PRESS: Still on students comfort, there are some questionable fees we pay for every session starting off with the Faculty Prospectus and N5000 for Faculty trip.

DEAN: For the faculty prospectus, the money is not paid directly to the faculty. And for the field trip, I’m just hearing it today for the first time. It is one of those things that we will discuss in the upcoming town meeting.

SUB-DEAN: Here is where I come in on matters relating to the field trip. If you have any field trip that requires going out of the faculty, you can write a letter, requesting for that money. It is a must. Everyone must pay for it so if you have any field trip, write a letter requesting for the money, they will give it to you. Like the last time, I think Linguistic embarked on one and they gave them the money. I think the problem is that the school management do not know which course has to do with field trips and which course do not. It now depends on your department to think of organising a field trip for you.

AFAS PRESS: We also paid for language lab last year. About five departments paid for language lab and there is no lab in view. We paid #5000. It was one of those things that inflated our fees last session.

DEAN: It is good you mentioned this because there will be a meeting next week. The NUC will be coming for accreditation and I am going to raise this. Tell your colleagues to be free to meet the sub dean if they have any issue. They can meet him at any time, not at night. So we can work on it. This concern of yours, we will take it up. You have an association in your department, think of a field trip. You can say you want to meet with Wole Soyinka.

AFAS PRESS: Your final words to Afasites sir

DEAN: Afasites should bear in mind the image of the association. Whatever you will do that will raise questions, shun it.

AFAS PRESS: Thank you very much sir.

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