* It’s privilege to see ABUAD – Kapur, UK varsity president
*ABUAD example of how university should be run – Afe Babalola
President of foremost United Kingdom university, the King’s College London, Professor Shitij Kapur, has said that he and his colleagues are inspired by what they saw at Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti (ABUAD).
Kapur lauded the ambition and mission of ABUAD, which he said culminated in its landmark achievements within a decade.
Kapur, who said it was a great feat for the university to have a population of over 8000 students within a short span, also described the ABUAD Multi System Hospital as another unbelievable record set by the young citadel of learning within a decade of its existence.
He spoke at ABUAD at the weekend during the launching of the Afe Babalola Centre for Transnational Education located which will be based in King’s College, London.
The President of King’s College, who led some members of his institution’s management to the event, said, “I am here today because we are launching the Aare Afe Babalola Centre for transnational education. The centre will be based in London.
“It’s a privilege to see ABUAD. My colleagues and I are inspired by what we saw. We are here not to teach, but to learn the ambition and mission of this university.
“I am surprised that it takes this university to go from zero to 8000 students in less than a decade. It took us centuries to build a world class hospital that we have and you have built one in less than a decade.
“So, I think the future is in your hands. They say humanity began from the continent of Africa and I think the century belongs here. We are here to embrace and we are here to contribute in whatever little way we can to your success,” Kapur said.
The Vice President, International Engagement and Service, King’s College, Prof. Funmi Olonisakin, said that the centre would give opportunity for the brightest students in Africa, quality education.
Olonisakin said, “The centre will give the brightest of the people in Africa quality education. We are building a transnational partnership that will allow ABUAD to liaise with other universities in the world. It will enable ABUAD students access to the university in the comfort of their campus,” she said.
ABUAD Founder, Aare Afe Babalola SAN, described the launch of the Transnational Education Centre as “an assurance that under-privileged will access education and the future is bright. There are so many people who could not afford to go to school, like in my own case.
“This relationship we are having with the King’s College will give them the opportunity to learn without necessarily going to King’s College or ABUAD and yet they can become graduates, like I did.
“In view of what I suffered, I am replicating how I conquered poverty and it is to me hope for now, hope tomorrow and hope for the future.
“I am worried about the level of education in the country. That was why after I left University of Lagos as a pro-chancellor, I established this university to be an example on how university should be run and it is because of the high standard which we have achieved that King’s College directly got in touch with us.
“We didn’t lobby for it to establish a centre for under-privileged people, not only in Nigeria, but the whole of Africa. To me, there is hope for everybody, there is hope for the rich, the poor and for everybody who wants to work hard and that is what we have achieved today,” Babalola said.