MANY VIRTUES OF NEBO


The Federal University Oye Ekiti was one of the nine universities established by the Federal Government of Nigeria lit 2010, pursuant to an executive order made by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan to make affordable university education accessible to the people. In a bid to ensure the actualization of the vision setting tip the Federal University Oye Ekiti, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Visitor to the University approved the constitution of a Management Team for the University in consultation with the Federal Ministry of Education and the Nigerian Universities Commission.

The Management Team for the Federal University Oye-Ekiti, at inception, comprised Professor (Ven.) Chinedu 0. Nebo (ViceC hancellor) and Dr (Mrs) Modupe 0. Ajayi (Registrar). Following his appointment as the first Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University Oye-Ekiti, Prof. C. 0. Nebo took proactive measures, against pressing odds, to ensure that the institution took off as scheduled. He swung into action forthwith to assemble experts in diverse areas to ensure the successful take-off of the University. The relative speed with which the university’s permanent site in Oye-Ekiti and second campus in lkole-Ekiti were developed speaks volumes: its referred to as to as the “Six-Month Miracle” - with lecture theatres, laboratories, workshop studios, recruitment of academic and non- academic staff as well as admission of students completed in such a record time and with such clinical accuracy that is almost alien to the public sector in Nigeria.

Donald Trump, the famed US Real Estate Developer says: “In the end, you’re measured not by how much you undertake but by what you finally accomplished”. This is both spot on and reflective of Professor Chinedu Ositadinma NeboOON, the pioneer Vice- Chancellor of the Federal University, Oye-Ekiti, a pacesetter, leading light and innovator per excellence. 

MENTORING

Hear Henry Ford (1863-1947): “The question, ‘Who ought to be boss?’ is like asking ‘Who ought to be the tenor in the quartet?’ “Obviously, the man who can sing tenor.” Prof. C. 0. Nebo .. is one for serving as a guide, counsellor, and teacher for others in both academic and occupational capacities. He uses every opportunity to posit modus operandi, buttress positions and generally guide staff and students alike, in fact, everyone who came his way, in order to enhance job satisfaction and derive maximum satisfaction from this terrestrial orb. His wisdom garnered from varied global experiences, evident in his speeches and impartation so much so that a very close observer, Chief Ayo Ogunlade elder statesman and former Minister of Information, compares him with Mentor, the elderly friend and counsellor of Odysseus in the Greek mythology, who also taught and counselled Telemachus, Odysseus’ son. 

 

PROACTIVE MANAGEMENT

Anyone familiar with the background and history of Federal University Oye-Ekiti would easily realize that, but for the proactive reasoning and management of the erstwhile Vice-Chancellor, Prof. C. 0. Nebo, the university would still be housed in Abuja, or the Federal University of Technology Akure as initially suggested in some quarters. Taking the bull by the horn, he consulted with relevant persons and, voila: FUOYE as it stands today! Two functional campuses, four remarkable faculties, twenty-seven academic departments, varied and multid imensional departments and units, pragmatic management and a sustainable legacy for generations yet unborn. 

 

FISCAL GOVERNANCE

No success is achieved in a vacuum especially so vis-à-vis financial aspects. This towering colossus is one for prudence and financial responsibility. Building on his vast experience in managing a forward-looking university, Prof. C. 0. Nebo ensured that no dime went unaccounted for. As the Chief Accounting Officer of the university, he put measures in place to make every Naira work: contractors acknowledged his prudence as he got value for money on all contracts readily awarded, whether building or supplies. Together with the relevant officers of the university, frivolous expenses were avoided and even personal funds were sometimes expended in a bid to ensure the smooth and efficient running of the system. Some may have been offended, but when external auditors from the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation visited the university in 2012, they gave the institution a clean bill of health and granted her self-accounting status a feat in itself! 

 

ADMINISTRATIVE STRATEGY

On Friday, January 27th 2012, the then Vice-Chancellor sent the first internal memorandum to all staff. He welcomed all those making the historic move to serve as pioneer staff of the Federal University, Oye-Ekiti and outlined his corporate agenda, premised on the desire “to be a part of a history that will be written in the hearts, minds and lives of people as well as in the annals of Ekiti State, the transforming story of Nigeria and the emerging competitive global world of the 21st Century” as, in his very words: “We have come to build a university. We have come to leave a legacy that will stand out and outlive us.” Little did he know that before the year would end, his story would have been re-written for the better. 

His stratagem throughout was to foster teamwork, responsible delegation of authority, challenging leadership, zero tolerance for excuses and lag in performance, high integrity and apposite monitoring through Management By Objectives, the present global paradigm for management. 

 

CRISIS MANAGEMENT

Crisis is man’s daily reality. How a leader handles crises is a mirror of his/her thought processes. Prof. C. 0. Nebo managed the internal and external crises that daily came his way with such diplomatic and insightful vigour that befuddled critics and amazed enthusiasts alike. 

As a proactive man, his trouble-shooting skills were second-to-none. He deftly doused mounting tension between the Oye and Ikole communities in the face of location tussle; preached and practised good neighbourliness, favoured none and all, balanced matters with forthrightness and without bias, sponged internal fracas and harped on accord in all its ramifications. 

INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT

On-ground realities speak volumes and for themselves, what with over 35 buildings either newly constructed or renovated within his first six months here.

                                                                                                                                            Reports by Emmanuel Adeghoje

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