One of the highlights of the 26th Convocation Ceremony of Abia State University was the installation of *His Royal Highness, Begha U. Tiv, Professor James Ayatse, Tor Tiv,* Chairman, Benue State Council of Traditional Rulers, as the 5th Hon. Chancellor of the University.
According to Jean Piaget, “the principle goal of Education is to create men who are capable of doing new things, not simply repeating what other generations have done, men who are creative, inventive and discoverers”.
According to the Vice-Chancellor, Distinguished Professor E. Uche Ikonne, this appointment is symbolic and strategic in various ways:
🔸 It is the first time in the history of the University that a strong academic of the height of a Professor of Biochemistry, of International repute, is occupying the seat of the Hon. Chancellor.
🔸 It is also the first time in the history of the University that a Distinguished University Administrator of the pedestral of Vice-Chancellor Emeritus of two different Federal Universities is to be appointed Hon. Chancellor of Abia State University.
🔸 It is equally the first time that the University is celebrating a historic convergence of an Eminent Traditional Institution and the best tenets of Academicsm by installing a highly reverred Traditional Ruler of a functional major segment of the Nation, the Tiv Nation.
The Vice-Chancellor, Distinguished Professor E. Uche Ikonne, further disclosed that the appointment of the Hon. Chancellor was made possible by the detribalized Governor and Visitor to the University, Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, Ph.D, who is not only a strong Academic himself but also genetically in love with Academics.
According to him, the appointment has the potential of strengthening the existing relationship and opening up new areas of Cooperation and Collaboration, not only between Abia and Benue States, but the two Geo-Political Zones, the two major tribes and Nigeria at large. *This is indeed handshake across the Niger*
As a fall out to the epoch Ceremony, the Hon. Chancellor, HRH Professor James Ayatse, Tor Tiv, endowed two annual prizes in perpetuity in the University, namely:
🔸 HRH Professor James Ayatse prize for the Best Graduating Student in Biochemistry.
🔸 HRH Professor James Ayatse prize for the Best Behaved Student, which is a novelty in Universities.
According to him, University Degrees are usually awarded based on “being found worthy in Character and Learning”, but regrettably, not much emphasis has been placed on “Character”,hence the importance of this unique prize.
The Hon.Chancellor, Professor of Biochemistry, was Vice-Chancellor, University of Agriculture, Makurdi, 2001-2006; Vice-Chancellor, Federal University Dutsin-ma, Katsina State, 2011-2016. He is married to Dr. Felicia Ayatse and blessed with children.
Kudos to the Eminent Governor and Visitor to the University, Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, Ph.D, for this symbolic and strategic appointment, towards taking Abia State University to the next level.
E.U.I- Good Leader, Great Achievements.