Four hundred and eighty (480) graduands at the weekend received Postgraduate degrees and diplomas of the University of Nigeria (UNN) in what the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Benjamin Ozumba, described as “the highest by any Nigerian university in one year.”
The university also conferred honorary doctorate degrees on three distinguished Nigerians – the Group Managing Director of Access Bank Herbert Wigwe, former Executive Secretary of the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) Mr. Reginald Chika Stanley, and the Managing Director of the Dozzy Group, Sir Daniel Chukwudozie.
The recipients of the degree, said they felt ‘greatly honoured’ to be associated with the University of Nigeria in such capacity.
Ozumba later told The Guardian that the honour conferred on the three Nigerians was “not a knee-jerk decision” but a product of careful appraisal of their contribution to the nation and mankind.
He specifically pointed out Wigwe’s successful efforts in moving Access Bank to its “present status as one of the top banks-from 16th position to number six in just 10 years.”
The vice chancellor also described Reginald Stanley as a successful Nigerian who served the country as a technocrat and has, since his retirement, continued to make positive impact in the private sector.
Ozumba said the third awardee, Chukwudozie, was a philanthropist who had made immense contribution to the growth and welfare of many Nigerians.
At least, 480 of the 2,113 graduands, who was conferred with postgraduate degrees of the university by the Chancellor, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Akande, were Ph.D candidates.
Eleven retired professors of UNN, one of who were Professor Uche Azikiwe, the wife of the founder and wife of Nigeria’s first president, the late Nnamdi Azikiwe, were elevated to the university’s club of “Emeritus Professors of the University of Nigeria.”