Prof. Charles Igwe, the newly appointed Vice-Chancellor, University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN),says his mission is to take the institution to the next level.
He also promised to consolidate on the achievements of Prof. Benjamin Ozumba, the outgoing vice-chancellor.
Igwe spoke in Nsukka on Wednesday, during the flag-off of some projects by Ozumba, as part of activities lined up to mark the end of his tenure that would expire on June 14.
He said Ozumba’s administration recorded many achievements and promised he would consolidate on them by finishing all projects flagged-off by Ozumba and add more in order to move UNN to the next level.
“My mission as the newly appointed VC of UNN is to consolidate and improve on Ozumba’s achievements in order to move the university to the next level.
“My administration will sustain academic excellence and completion of these projects flagged-off today by Ozumba as they are very important to the university.
“Ozumba’s administration has done well and my administration will consolidate on his achievements,” he said.
Speaking shortly after flagging -off some projects in UNN as part of activities to mark end of his tenure, Ozumba said the projects were geared towards boosting academic excellence and innovations in the university.
“We all know now that knowledge based economy rule the world, time of commodity economy has gone.
“These projects flagged-off today which include : UNN Lion Science Park, UNN Lion Tractor and UNN Ultra Modern Science Laboratory, re-modeling and reconstruction of Zik’s flats hostel will help produce students that will solve technology problems in Nigeria and in the world.
“UNN is the only university in the country that has science park which serves as a hub for technological development and innovations,” he said.
He said as a result of the science park, Innoson Motors had started a partnership with UNN to manufacture local tractors that would be of international standard.
“Today UNN Lion Tractor Manufacturing Factory building is among projects I flagged- off, where Innoson Motors will manufacture locally made tractors that will be of international standard.
“The aim is to boost agriculture by making tractors accessible and affordable to farmers in the country,” he said.
The outgoing VC said the remodeling and reconstruction of Zik’s flats hostel was to ensure that students have enough hostel accommodation in the university.
“The remodeling and reconstruction of Zik’s flats hostel is done on private partnership under the agreement of Build Operate and Transfer (BOT).
“What this means is that our partners will use their money to reconstruct Zik’s flats hostel and manage it for some time to recoup their money before transferring the hostel back to the university.
“When the reconstruction is completed, it will end the problem of hostel accommodation in UNN,” he said.
Ozumba disclosed that the 23 projects that he had flagged-off both in Nsukka and Enugu campuses were attracted from Tet Fund, Presidential Projects Intervention and from individuals on private partnership arrangement with UNN.
In his remarks during the foundation stone laying of the Lion Tractor Factory building, Mr Innocent Chukwuma, the Managing Director of Innoson Vehicles Manufacturing Company, said when his company starts producing tractors, it would boost food production.
“The aim of this project is to key into President Muhammadu Buhari’s agenda to diversify the economy through agriculture.
“The Lion Tractor Factory building in UNN will be ready in four months time by God’s special grace.
” I thank UNN for finding me worthy for this collaboration which will go a long way to boost agriculture in the country,” he said.