Elder statesman and founder of Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti (ABUAD), Chief Afe Babalola (SAN) has commended the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) Kaduna for its discipline which has become the hallmark of the military institution.
Babalola who spoke at the 28th convocation ceremony of the academy where he was honoured with Doctor of Letters, (D. Litt) over said he was proud of the achievements of NDA which has produced over 4,000 graduates since it became a degree awarding institution in 1985.
He said, “The issue of discipline which is the hallmark of NDA makes this university unique. As a stakeholder in the sector, I was the Pro-Chancellor of University of Lagos (UNILAG) from 2001 to 2007; I can say that the decay and decadence of strike actions, cultism, drug, dilapidated infrastructure, sale of handouts among other vices prevalent in public institutions is in large measure responsible for poor quality of graduates from our public universities”.
“These are vices which are not only unknown but alien to your university. During my tenure as UNILAG Pro-Chancellor, i tried to fight these vices and succeeded to a great extent so much so that I was awarded the Best Pro-Chancellor in Nigeria twice by the National Universities Commission (NUC). That was the main reason why I decided to establish a university which would be a benchmark and reference point to others and a leader in quality and functional education.”
He added, “The moment I stepped into the academy, I saw timeliness cleanliness and punctuality.I saw that your students-cadets greet people. I saw that the campus is clean and tidy. I saw warmth and above all, for the four hours duration of the convocation ceremony, everybody remained seated, except the speaker. This is highly commendable and I’m impressed about these virtues.
The erstwhile Pro-Chancellor said he would champion the crusade that these virtues be replicated in all universities in the country with a view to restoring its lost glory.
Babalola, who announced a prize of N500,000 to the Best Graduating Student and another N500,000 to the Most Well Behaved Graduating Student in perpetuity, said there would henceforth be collaboration between NDA and ABUAD to tackle the menace of indiscipline,
He congratulated the 1,732 graduating students made up of 571 first degree holders and 1,161 post graduate students and appealed to them to apply what they have been taught and learnt in NDA to whatever they do in private and publicly.