Professor Maimuna’s one Year Giant Stradesin FUGA
By Adamu Saleh
By Adamu Saleh
“ Iam extremely overwhelmed by the confidence you reposed in me and I promise you my total and unreserved dedication in offering my service to Federal University Gashua and Insha Allah, I will never fail you” Professor Maimuna Waziri.
Federal University Gashua (FUGA) is one of the 12 universities created by the Federal government in the six geopolitical zones of the country in order to open access to tertiary education for the teeming Nigerian youths. As part of effective planning, the Federal government set up an implementation Committee comprising of the National Universities Commission (NUC), the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) and other relevant stakeholders.
The implementation of the first phase of the proposal commenced in February, 2011, with the establishment of nine Universities, while the second phase involving the remaining three universities including Federal University Gashua (FUGA) commenced on 18th February, 2013 which followed the appointment of the pioneer Vice Chancellor Professor Shehu Abdul Rahman.
Proper academic activities started in 2014 in the following Faculties, Units and Centres:
Faculty of Arts, Management and Social Science, Faculty of Science, Faculty of Agriculture, General Studies and Entrepreneurship Development Unit, School of Preliminary Studies and Centre for Irrigation and Desert Studies.
At present the university has four Faculties, 24 Departments and 22 undergraduate programmes in addition to the units listed above.
It is also projected that at full maturity, the University shall have the following Faculties, Schools, Units and Centres each running a number of programmes or providing critical support services:
Faculty of Agriculture, Faculty of Arts, Faculty of Education, Faculty of Environmental Studies, Faculty of Health Sciences, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Management and Social Sciences, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Science, General Studies and Entrepreneurship Development Unit and School of Preliminary Studies. Others are, School of Postgraduate Studies, Centre for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD), Centre for Gender Studies and Skill Development (CGSSD) and Centre for Energy Studies (CES).
On 16th January, 2021, the Governing Council of Federal University Gashua, under the leadership of the Chairman and Pro-Chancellor, Mallam Ibrahim Akuyam, approved the appointment of Professor Maimuna Waziri, as the third substantive Vice Chancellor after the expiration of the five year term of Professor Andrew Haruna on 11th February, 2021.
When she assumed office on 11th February, 2021, Professor Maimuna Waziri, a professor of Analytical Chemistry was not new to the challenges facing or confronting the young university having served as the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Administration) for four years, pioneer Dean, Faculty of Science, Head, Department of Chemistry and Acted as Vice-Chancellor for over 50 times she wasted no time and left no stone unturned in repositioning the university to compete with other universities around the world by setting the ground running and propelling FUGA toward the path of rapid academic, administrative and infrastructural development despite the challenges confronting education in the country of inadequate funding.
Maimuna Waziri, inherited an almost empty treasury but that did not deter her, she was right on track to take the university to greater heights and also deliver on the expectations of staff, students and critical stakeholders.
Immediately after she took the mantle of leadership, Professor Maimuna Waziri gave a matching order where she directed the Department of works and Physical planning to explore the possibility of completing all abandoned projects and what to do with the dilapidated structures on campus. She also urged the Environmental Science and Faculty of Agriculture to make the environment friendly by providing green environment and food for not only the university but the larger community.
She also called on FeduConsult to think of ways and avenues that will generate more funds for the university thereby boosting its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
Maimuna appealed to staff to visit the newly established Centre of Excellence that is open to research in all areas of human endeavours and see what they can do to add value to the centre and the University.
In just one year into her five year term, the professor of Analytical Chemistry and an academic per Excellence has met a reasonable percentage of staff, students and other stakeholders’ expectations and has kept the hopes of all high and promising. This was achieved by bringing in, her vision, passion, humility, experience, pedigree and academic know-how to bear on the governance of a young and promising university in transforming the university academically to be able to compete favourably with other universities around the world.
Across all the four Faculties of the university, there is the belief that if she could achieve the infrastructural and academic transformation in just one year, she is indeed the right person for the position of the Vice Chancellor of FUGA.
In one year, Professor Maimuna Waziri has brought unprecedented development to the university and her main concern here was to carefully develop the university taking into cognizance the master plan and in conformity with the vision and mission of the institution which is aimed at attracting senior academic and non academic staff as well as prospective students to the university.
To achieve these she initiated the idea of partnership and linkages with other sister universities within and outside the country. Knowing full well that this is one of the best ways and means the university will grow and compete with its contemporaries.
The success stories of Maimuna Waziri’s prudent stewardship style and credibility is the invitation of different developmental partners and other stakeholders to the university which is yielding positive results to the benefit of the university.
She has pointed the way forward for the university and this has raised the bar which has shown the way for others to follow and this will go a long way to awaken leaders to what commitment, creativity, focus, perseverance, vision, can make in the life of a university, most especially a growing one.
Mindful of the fact that provision of qualified teaching and non teaching staff is critical to the development of a university, Maimuna on assumption of office swung into action and with the help of a robust and dynamic Governing Council, she has succeeded in employing high class flying Principal Officers for the University, a development which the university has not experienced since establishment, about nine years ago.
A total number of 18 academic staff have secured admission to further their studies under the Academic Staff Development Programme, two academic staff have published two books under the Book development sponsored by TETFund titled, Colonial and Administration of Native Courts in Ejigbo, authored by Dr. Iyanda Kamoru Ahmed and IUPAC Naming Inorganic Chemistry, By Ahmed Jibrin Uttu.
A two day Workshop on Capacity Building for Assessing/Winning Research Grant was organized for Academic staff and five day workshop on ICDL Base Module and ICDL Intermediate Module Training was also organized for both academic and non teaching staff in the university, since her assumption of office.
Despite the inadequate financial challenges facing the education sector in the country, Federal University Gashua, under the leadership of Professor Maimuna Waziri, has recorded tremendous progress in the area of physical Infrastructure such as completion of ongoing and abandoned projects, construction and renovation of structures in the university for the benefit of staff and students. She also recorded a remarkable landmark in the area of intervention by critical stakeholders and other wealthy individuals in the society.
She embarked on the execution of projects which have direct bearing on the life of the university but hitherto terribly suffered neglect by the previous administration and these include:
Rehabilitation of English Language Lab,
Restoration of university website which was abandoned for years and creation of staff email address,
Ten solar powered boreholes,
Construction of a mini Stadium,
Renovation of sporting hall,
Construction of a new sporting hall and
Construction of five kilometers of road spread across the university campus.
In December 2019, the University received items and equipment worth millions of naira from the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP) but the items were left lying in the university’s store due to the fact that the former administration could not allocate a befitting office accommodation to Intellectual Property Technology Transfer Office (IPTTO).
With the appointment of Professor Maimuna Waziri as the 3rd substantive Vice Chancellor and her taking over the mantle of leadership, she immediately allocated a well furnished office accommodation and appointed Engineer Ismail Abdulmalik as the Coordinator of IPTTO in the university.
The reason behind the establishment of IPTTO by the Federal government was to among other thing foster the creation and dissemination of knowledge and to provide certainty in individual and institutional rights associated with ownership and distribution of benefits that may be derived from the creation of intellectual property.
She has also constructed one block of three classrooms for demonstration school,
Renovation of Postgraduate school building, renovation of the old ICT Centre,
Renovation of Faculties of Management and Social Sciences building and former Faculty of Science building,
Renovation of Centre of Excellence and procurement of equipment for the Centre of Entrepreneurship development.
In conjunction with the Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, the NITDA Digital Economy Centre was virtually commissioned in the university.
Construction of four blocks of students’ hostels and 300 capacity ICT and Robotic Centre is equally ongoing.
She has also secured a loan of 400million naira to boost local production and processing of poultry products under the Tertiary Institution Poultry Revival Scheme programme of the Central Bank of Nigeria in the university
Others are, procurement of Library equipment and teaching aids,
Completion and equipping the central Laboratory, construction of walk ways from the 300metres road to Faculty of Agriculture to 1000 capacity lecture hall,
From 300 carrying capacity lecture theater to new male hostel and from the main road to Faculty of Science linking Central Laboratory complex,
Renovation of Principal Officers quarters,
Procurement of a tractor and insurance of houses and school vehicles.
Because of the crucial role health plays in the life of Man, Professor Maimuna undertook the Construction of the state-of-the-art clinic fully equipped with facilities for the use of students and staff and it has reached 90 percent completion level.
Staff and students’ welfare is one main issue of the Maimuna transformation agenda and it has remained a bold achievement since her assumption of office.
The university under her leadership has successfully hosted the Institutional Monitoring Committee led by ASUU National President, who came and inspected all NEEDS Assessment projects in the university. She also hosted the Presidential Visitation Panel, successfully hosted accreditation teams for the re-accreditation of some programmes that got interim accreditation during the 2019 exercise.
A total number of 28 Academic, Senior Administrative, Technical and Professional staff were promoted in the 2019/2020 Appraisal Exercise and the 2020/2021 Exercise is almost concluded awaiting Council approval.
She flagged off tree planting campaign in the university to combat desertification and provide green environment.
She said that planting and raising a tree is good to humanity and the reward cannot be quantified and therefore urged each staff member to plant and raise one in order to create green and conducive environment to mitigate the negative effect of desertification.
She also directed the Faculty of Agriculture to take care of the trees that were planted and with this action the environment is looking greener and beautiful.
“It is obvious that many are called but few are chosen.”
Saleh is the Public Relations Officer
Federal University Gashua