Address of the Chancellor, Archbishop Ignatius A.Kaigama, on the Occasion of the 5thConvocation of Godfrey Okoye University, Enugu, 10th February, 2018.
This is the day the Lord has made, we rejoice and are glad in it! (Ps 118:24).
I bring you greetings from the Archdiocese ofJos and from the good people of Plateau State.
Godfrey Okoye University apart from promoting serious academic, spiritual and moral excellence has also initiated programmes to promote healthy intercultural relationship, especially between northern and southern Nigeria. As a support to me to sustain this vision as Chancellor, the following have this year come with me from Jos, Plateau State to this convocation:
1). Prof. John Wade, representing the Governor of Plateau State Barrister Simon Lalong, Prof Seddi S. Maimako, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Jos, Prof. Joseph C Obilom the Eze Ibo in Plateau State and a professor in Unijos and Prof. Iorapuu S. Tor, also a professor in Unijos. They came not only for reason of academic cross-fertilization but also to strengthen inter-cultural harmony. I appreciate the sacrifice they have made to come all the way to Enugu despite their demanding schedules.
I congratulate the Vice Chancellor, the senate,the staff and students of Godfrey OkoyeUniversity on the occasion of the 5thconvocation of the university.
On this special day, we celebrate the joy ofcompletion, the reward of hard work and the beginning of a new chapter. We are gathered as God’s own university family to celebratethe fulfilment of our mission “to produce graduates who will be outstanding in learning, balanced in character and personality and ready to pursue epistemic unity in all itsramifications”. This is indeed our harvest time and we look with deep joy, gratitude and fulfillment at the fruits of our labour.
I commend the VC for the speed of progress which this university has recorded in so short a time of its existence. Godfrey OkoyeUniversity is known today as one of the fastest growing private universities in Nigeria. Its growth is not only quantitative but also qualitative, as can be seen in the NUC approval and accreditation of its programmes and also in the tremendous improvement in national and international university web-rankings.
I would like to thank the Governor of Enugu State for his financial support for the construction of the road to the main campus of our University at Ugwuomu Nike. This huge financial contribution of the state (500 millionNaira) for the construction of the road will certainly facilitate the movement of the university to its main campus. I also thank the Governor for donating a 500 kva transformer to the university. I would also like to express my gratitude to all those who supported the new Godfrey Okoye University ScholarshipTrust Fund, especially the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Scholarship Trust Fund, His Royal Majesty Igwe Alfred Achebe. May God bless you all!
I will not end this address without thanking the Proprietor, the Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Enugu, for his sacrifices towards the growth of this university. The VC keeps me abreast of the Bishop’s support and encouragement to him and members of staff of the university. I remain grateful to you Bishop Callistus Onaga.
We pray for more of such showers of blessings in the days and years ahead.
Finally, my dear graduating students, Godfrey Okoye University as your Alma-Mater has nurtured you in her womb for the past four years and now she releases you to launch out and cause a difference in our world. As products of this Institution, you are privileged to have enjoyed a special formation; high academic standard, value-added education; moral, spiritual and intellectual excellence, the kind that only a Catholic education can offer! You carry this special DNA, do not waste it!
It is my prayer and hope that as we send you forth to “go into the world and bear lasting fruits”, our world, our country, our society will be better for it.
The recent turn of events in our Country calls for serious action and concern for all of us. We cannot throw up our hands in desperation and let violence, corruption, ethnocentrism, bad leadership, political recklessness and all the other vices prevail. Beyond mere talk and analysis, we must be part of the decision-making process of our Nation. Do not sit on the fence. Be involved. If you have the opportunity, register and vote in the upcoming elections.
As you go, I hope you succeed and
make us proud with good reports and record breaking achievements in your various spheres of life.
I therefore invoke the blessings of God upon you and charge you with the word of the Lord to Joshua:
“Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid! Do not be discouraged! For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9).
God bless you!