By Ojo Precious, OAU
How well do you know Obafemi Awolowo University? Check out these 15 facts you probably do not know;
Do you know that:
- Obafemi Awolowo University is formerly known as University of Ife?
- University of Ife was renamed to Obafemi Awolowo University on May 12, 1987 in honour of Chief Obafemi Awolowo (1909–1987)?
- The first financial grant provided for the takeoff of the university was £250,000 from the Western regional government?
- On September 22, 1962, OAU was opened to 244 pioneer students at its temporary facilities, the previous college of arts and sciences, Ibadan?
- Oladele Ajose, was nominated as the first Vice-Chancellor of the university and the university began with five faculties; Agriculture, Arts, Economics and Social Studies, Law, and Science?
- In February 1966, Lt-Col Francis Adekunle Fajuyi, the first Military Governor of the Western Region, appointed Hezekiah Oluwasanmi as the new Vice-Chancellor, and Chief TT Solaru as the pro-chancellor? And gave them money and marching orders, to relocate to the permanent campus by October 1966?
- Fajuyi was killed in the military mutiny of July 1966 at Ibadan, and did not witness the movement he orchestrated? So, Fajuyi Hall, a residential hall for undergraduate male students was named to honor his contributions in perpetuity.
- The movement to its new campus at Ile-Ife began in January 1967?
- OAU started the first Faculty of Pharmacy in West Africa, the first Department of Chemical Engineering and the first Electronics component in addition to Electrical Engineering?
- In 1975, a new military government effected decrees making University of Ife a federal university?
- The first vice-chancellor of the new university was Professor Oladele Ajose (MD, PhD) a Glasgow University graduate and Nigeria’s first professor of public health recruited from the University of Ibadan? He served from 1962 to 1966, until political upheavals and military coups led him to be replaced.
- On 10 July 1999 members of the Black Axe Confraternity murdered the secretary-general of the students’ union, George Iwilade, and several other student activists in the Obafemi Awolowo University massacre.
- The first structure completed in January 1967 are three blocks of four floors each named the Humanities building? These blocks have interconnected walkways to the other faculties within the quad.
- OAU has 9 halls of residence namely; Awolowo Hall, Angola Hall, Alumni Hall, ETF Hall, Fajuyi Hall, Ladoke Akintola Hall, Moremi Hall, Mozambique Hall, Murtala Muhammed Hall.
- Nigeria’s only Nobel prize-winner (in literature) and the first African laureate, Wole Soyinka, served as professor of Comparative Literature at the University of Ife from 1975 to 1999.
Also do you know I am a student of the prestigious university, OBA AWON UNIVERSITIES? We only have two universities in Nigeria Obafemi Awolowo university and others. lol! A big shout out to Great Ife students worldwide.