3RD CONVOCATION CEREMONY, GODFREY OKOYE UNIVERSITY
CHANCELLOR’S ADDRESS: 3RD CONVOCATION CEREMONY, GODFREY OKOYE UNIVERSITY, ENUGU, 5TH DECEMBER, 2015
BY MOST REV. IGNATIUS A. KAIGAMA, ARCHBISHOP OF JOS AND PRESIDENT, CATHOLIC BISHOPS’ CONFERENCE OF NIGERIA
I am delighted to share in the joy of this day of our very fast growing Godfrey Okoye University which has produced the wonderful set of graduands whose convocation we are celebrating. This I believe it is only the beginning of a long list of accomplishments these graduating students will each achieve. Today’s event is a spring board to launch them on the path of greatness. As Chancellor of GO University my dear graduating students, I am overwhelmed with joy in being a part of your present achievement, while wishing you a future filled with uncountable blessings and success.
My prayers and best wishes go with you just as we remain optimistic that you and the other youths of Nigeria will be the major beneficiaries of the present administration led by President Muhammadu Buhari, who is determined to improve the quality of life of Nigerians through the sustained campaign for honesty and transparency in national service, judicious and God-fearing use of national resources and opportunities for the youths which will help to liberate them from the shackles of frustration, addictive substances, violence, unemployment, social insecurity, etc. I am sure that the Government is aware that the negligence of the youth of any nation is tantamount to laying a foundation for insecurity and retrogression.
My dear graduating students, your achievements here have been impressive. I know however that you have not succeeded on your own. Ps 126:1 says if the Lord does not build the house in vain does the labourer labour. Apart from God’s grace and protection, you have been well supported by family members, friends, benefactors and the University community. We thank them all.
Of late, Godfrey Okoye University has been making news in many areas – the university received a full operational license from the Nigeria University Commission, NUC, another foundation day was celebrated, educational exchanges, conferences, both local and international were organized.
I am particularly impressed that in this academic session, we witnessed an increase in the number of new students from Northern Nigeria. My appointment as Chancellor was predicated on the fact that we would work with the Proprietor, the Vice Chancellor and other stake holders to encourage inter-cultural programmes in the university. Happily, this has come to be as we now witness not only an atmosphere of sound academic excellence but one that goes pari passu with inter-cultural activities. The GO University is giving the students the opportunity to be exposed to many other cultures. Last year, the presence of Bishops from Northern Nigeria at the convocation was evidence of this growing understanding and collaboration as encouraged by the Catholic Diocese of Enugu. This year, I invited the Emir of Wase and Chairman, Jama’atu Nasril Islam, Plateau State, His Royal Highness, Alhaji Muhammed Sambo and the Emir of Kanam, Plateau State, His Royal Highness, Alhaji Mohammed Muhammadu Muazu, to join me at this convocation ceremony as a way of cementing the Intercultural and inter religious initiative pioneered by the GO University. This is in addition to the fact that the convocation lecture is being delivered by the Executive Governor of Sokoto State from Northern Nigeria, Rt. Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal. It shows the growing attempt at cultural and ethnic relationship which I believe is a veritable way to build a solid and united Nigeria. It is no longer news that many Nigerians prefer identifying with only their culture, region or religion rather than the national common good. It is imperative to change our attitude and to put Nigeria and national interests and aspirations first.
Our students are graduating into a society that faces critical socio-economic and political challenges but I believe that they are well-educated, and deeply committed to making our country more secure, prosperous, just, healthy, sustainable, beautiful and enriching.
My dear graduands, as you leave this campus, please know that you are intrinsically part and parcel of the Godfrey Okoye University. You are about to join a host of GO University alumni with whom you can share your experiences and challenges, and from whom you can learn a lot more. We hope you will keep in touch constantly with the university family that has given you such an integral education.
Kindly allow me to conclude this address by invoking the blessings of God upon you to help you always do only those things that are good with a high sense of patriotism. I hereby impart my blessings on you with the charge to you to go to the ends of the earth and make us happy and proud!
Go and make a difference!! Go and succeed!!!
Your Excellency the Proprietor, the Vice Chancellor, Principal officers, staff, students of GO University, our brand new graduates, benefactors, distinguished invited guests and well wishers, thank you all for your kind attention.