UYO VARSITY VISITATION PANEL BEGINS, SITTING
The panel, which is expected to complete its assignment within four weeks, has Alhaji Aliyu Sambo as chairman and Mr. Chuks Eze Obia as secretary.
Other members of the visitation panel include Mrs. Dayo Okusami, Prof. Nimi Briggs, Mr. Shehu Usman Aladire, Ere Efeke and Mary Akujobi.
Earlier in the month, President Goodluck Jonathan set up visitation panels for federal universities and inter-university centres.
In a press statement signed by Maurice Uko, acting director of the institution and made available to The Guardian, the panel is to look into the financial management of each institution, investigate the application of funds, examine the adequacy of workers' development programmes, examine the general security on the university, among other terms of reference.
According to chairman of the panel, they were in the university to obtain first-hand information on the achievements and challenges of the institution. He added that such would afford them the opportunity to make appropriate recommendations to the Presidency.
Sambo said the panel was not out to witch-hunt the university's management or anybody, pleading for co-operation from the institution to enable the panel succeed in its assignment.
Earlier, the university's Vice Chancellor, Prof. Comfort Ekpo, informed the panel that the University of Uyo was grappling with myriad of problems including inadequate workers' offices, lecture halls, student hostels, out-dated facilities and equipment and inadequate power supply.
According to her, the inadequacies may not be unconnected with the non-release of take-off grant to the institution 20 years after it became a federal university.
The VC used the opportunity to inform the panel of the benevolence of the Akwa Ibom State government, donor agencies and individuals who have assisted the university in the rehabilitation of internal road and provision of facilities and equipment, which she noted, have helped the university to remain afloat.
She noted that in spite of numerous problems militating against the development of the university, the institution has gotten accreditation for its academic programmes except for three, which have an interim accreditation status.
The vice chancellor thanked the panel for the visit, adding that with the caliber and wealth of experience of members of the panel, the university would be better of at the end of the exercise.
She assured them of her management's cooperation in making their assignment a hitch-free one.