Prof. Florence Obi emerges new UNICAL VC

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In an interview/election conducted for UNICAL VC position on Thursday 10th September 2020, Prof. Florence Obi scored 84.6 points to defeat others as stated below:

1st = Florence Obi (84.6pts)
2nd = Bisong Ebuta (65.8pts)
3rd = Joseph Asor (63.4pts)
4th = Patrick Asuquo (61.9pts)
5th = Ayara Ndem (61.9pts)
6th = Eyong Eyong (59.3pts)
7th = Anthony Eneji (58.8pts)
8th = Ita Benedict (58.5pts)
9th = Eze Bassey (58.3pts)
10th = Offiong Offiong (58.2pts)
11th = Stella Attoe (57.8pts)
12th = Nwanna (55.6pts)
13th = Umealli (43.pts)

Prof. Florence Obi will be sworn-in on the 1st of December, 2020 as the 11th VC of UNICAL and will replace the outgoing VC, Prof. Zana Akpagu for the 2020- 2025

The management of the University of Calabar has confirmed the appointment of Prof. Florence Obi as the substantive Vice Chancellor of the University.

In a letter signed by Amb. Gabriel O. Egbe, fcai, Registrar and Secretary to the Council, UNICAL, on Thursday, September 10, 2020 with reference number “UC/REG/VC/01” the management said the appointment which takes effect from December 1, 2020, is for a five (5) year term.

“Following your success at the interview conducted on Thursday, 10th September, 2020, the Governing Council of the University of Calabar, deriving its authority from the Universities Miscellaneous Provisions (Amendment Act 2003), has approved your appointment as Vice Chancellor of the University of Calabar. This appointment which takes effect from 1st December. 2020, is for a five (5) year term.

“You will be on a salary as approved by the Federal Government for officers in your position as Vice Chancellor. Your allowances and other conditions of service are as applicable to holders of similar positions in the Nigerian University System and as may be approved from time to time by the University Governing Council.

“During your tenure in office, you will be expected to perform all such duties as the law establishing the University stipulates for holders of the position of Vice Chancellor and other duties as may be assigned to you from time to time by the Governing Council.

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“On behalf of Council, Senate and Management, I congratulate you for this appointment and pray for the almighty God to grant you the grace and wisdom to move our University forward”, the statement read.

Meanwhile, Prof. Sen. Nkechi Nwaogu, Chairman Governing Council and Pro-Chancellor, University of Calabar, has congratulated Prof. Obi for emerging as the first female UNICAL VC.

“The Pro Chancellor and Chairman Governing Council, University of Calabar, Senator Nkechi Nwaogu CON PhD has congratulated Prof. Florence Obi over her emergence as the first female vice Chancellor University of Calabar.

“Senator Nkechi Nwaogu who described the erudite scholar as an astute educational icon also prayed for the success of her tenure as the Vice Chancellor University of Calabar”, Prof. Nwaogu posted on her official Facebook page on Friday, September 11, 2020 at about 6:45am.

Rt. Hon. Eteng Jonah Williams, Speaker, Cross River State House of Assembly, has also congratulated Prof. Obi for being elected as the 11th Vice Chancellor of the University of Calabar: His words : “I wish to assure you (Florence Obi) that the Cross River State House of Assembly would continue to support, collaborate and strengthen their relationship with the University of Calabar.

Professor Obi hails from Boki local government area in Cross River State. She began her academic career as an Assistant Lecturer at the Institute of Education, University of Calabar in March 1990 (30 years ago).

Two years after her appointment, with her utmost desire to foster a bold and innovative spirit in faculty teaching and academic excellence, she won a 6-months postgraduate scholarship to Jordan-Hill College of Education, Glasgow, Scotland, under the World University Service (WUS) World-Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) in a keenly contested interview for staff of the Institute of Education. On her return from the United kingdom, she was placed in charge of the WWF/NCF funded schools and Community Education Programmes. She subsequently facilitated the development of the degree programme in Environmental Education of the University, which has since resulted in the establishment of a full-fledged and flourishing Department of Environmental Education. Professor Obi rose through the ranks to become a Professor of Special Needs Education in 2007.

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Professor Obi, a committed university Don who encourages students creative work, has served the University of Calabar as Head of Department of Environmental Education and Deputy Dean, Faculty of Education. She is the only two-time back to back elected Dean, faculty of Education, since the history of the University.

As Dean, she pioneered the take-off of 22 affiliate programmes of the Federal College of Education, Obudu, Cross River State and the Federal College of Education, Kastina-Ala, Benue State to the faculty of Education of the University of Calabar. She had also served as the Chairperson of University of Calabar International Demonstration School (formerly called University of Calabar International Secondary School) where she left lasting physical legacies to her credit.

Following her credibility, integrity and commitment to service, she was voted as the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academics) by the University Senate. As DVC Academics, she was also a member of the University Governing Council, where she brought her wealth of experience to bear in the growth and development of the University.

Interestingly, Professor Obi’s proclivity for scholastic excellence and optimal productivity is further evident in her extensive research, with over 60 publications to her credit in both local and international journals. As a team player and a mentor, she has supervised over 30 postgraduates Diploma Projects, 12 Master’s Degrees Theses and 8 PhD Dissertations and has so far assessed 13 persons for professional positions. Remarkably, she was also an External Examiner to the University of Education, Ghana, 2008, 2009 and 2010-2013.

She has held several Administrative Positions/Responsibilities which include Permanent Member of the Senate, University of Calabar since 2007; Member, University Central Accreditation Committee, University of Calabar, 2006-2008; Chairperson, Housing Loan Implementation Committee, University of Calabar, 2011-2015 among others.

Prof. Obi grasp of quality assurance in higher education transcends her role as a policy maker while on the Board of the National Universities Commission, NUC, to the actual field work on quality assurance. At the moment, she is the only Professor in the University of Calabar who has participated in all major NUC quality assurance exercise namely; programme accreditation, institutional accreditation, resource verification and Monitoring and Evaluation of Affiliate Institutions.

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She has also served as an Honourable Commissioner, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development and member of Cross River State Executive Council, 2007; pioneer Member of the Cross River State Carnival Commission; and Country Coordinator; European Union funded Erasmus Mundus Kite 2 Programme where she attracted £995million as grant for capacity building across the entire Nigerian universities with University of Calabar being the biggest beneficiary.

Professor Obi is a recipient of many Awards/Honours, including the Student Union Government, University of Calabar, “Award as the most student friendly Dean of the Faculty” in 2014. She is well travelled and exposed.

As a mother of four, she derived interest in helping the less privilege and giving to charity. She enjoys outdoor exercising and playing indoor games. She loves reading motivational books and listening to Christians music.

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About Samuel Abasiekong 997 Articles
Samuel Abasiekong, Senior Journalist, Newspaper Publisher, Author of many literature text books, French-English, English-French languages Translator and Interpreter, Public Relations/Advertising Expert, Multi-sectoral Counsellor & Consultant, Nigerian Red Cross Society Volunteer, News Editor & Reporter @ 9News Nigeria

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