The University of Calabar (UNICAL), on Friday, 11th September 2020 announced Prof. Florence Banku Obi as its 11th Vice-Chancellor and first female to occupy the position after 45 years since its inception.
Prof. Florence, the former Deputy Vice-chancellor (Academic) is a mother of four and grandmother of six from Bansan Osokom, Boki Local Government Area of Cross River State, whose successful academic voyage began at the University of Calabar in March 1990 (30 years ago) as a lecturer in the Department of Education.
Sen. Nkechi Nwaogu, Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of UNICAL Governing Council, who announced the result, stated that the process of the selection was transparent.
In her words: “At the end of the day, we have a brand new first female VC of the University in the last 45 years. The interview was transparent and some of the contestants are part of our council. “What I expect of her is to look at what the outgoing VC has done because governance is a continuous process. She should invite all those who contested with her and build teamwork. “No one person can execute the programmes without the integration of other erudite administrators that presented their CVs yesterday. “She should be an integrative agent and I expect her to look inward on the areas of internally generated revenue and pluck the areas. “She needs to motivate the staff and students of the school and as an erudite Professor and a mother; I know that she will bring all these to bear,” she said.
She congratulated Prof. Banku-Obi and wished her the best in her tenure.
On her part, Prof. Banku-Obi, said she was elated and happy, adding that she returned all the glory to God. “I am very happy today, I just received my appointment letter from the 12th Council as the 11th VC elect effective from Dec. 1, 2020. “It was a free and fair contest and I am happy about it. The University of Calabar should expect an inclusive administration from me,” she said.
Prof. Banku-Obi will be taking over from Prof. Zana Akpagu whose tenure end on Nov. 30, 2020. Prof. Banku-Obi has been a member of the University Governing Council and also served as the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academics). She has over 60 publications to her credit in both local and international journals.
She has been a Professor of Special Needs Education for 13 years (Having been made a Full Chair Professor in 2007). Her leadership role in University of Calabar began in 1993 immediately after her return from a Scholarship programme in Jodan Hill College, Glasgow, UK, when as an Assistant Lecturer, she was appointed Coordinator, World-Wide Fund for Nature/Nigerian Conservation Foundation (WWF/NCF) funded Schools and Community Education programmes in 1993.
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