Dear Harvard Friend

‘UI is the best education money can afford in this part of the world’- Late Prof. Olu Owolabi
It beats me and it is also a slap on my face that someone will cherry-pick some misguided specifics at will to mock my alma-mater, the one and only University of Ibadan.
For a start, I will love to inform my dear Harvard friend that there is a difference between a Nigerian University and a University in Nigeria. Not stopping at that, there is also a clear-cut contrast between The University of Ibadan, Ibadan and a Nigerian University.
Let’s continue!
Dear friend, in your write-up, you stated some horrific and cool-spot opinions in an attempt to ridicule the Nigerian Premier University, a citadel of learning built on a city of red earth. However, I’ll forgive your flaws on the premise that you wrote your article over 5years ago and had not appropriately made thorough consultations and fact-finding researches recently. Had that not been so, I will accordingly ask where you were when the University of Ibadan was taking breath-taking strides recently.
Dear friend, in the essay you presented, you posit that the likes of Ore Afolayan, Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka, Emeka Anyaoku wasted their time and money by being alumni of the University of Ibadan. Well, as you said, the names I mentioned are just proofs that I would highlight for terming UI, Ibadan a great school. You are right. For that I ask, how will you ascertain if a tractor is good or bad, if not by the farm produce it brings to fore? On that note, I will categorically state that you lost your first argument.
Dear friend, in a subsequent line, you stated that the prestigious University of Ibadan did not make a list of top 1000colleges and Universities in the world as catalogued few years ago. For this, I will humbly ask, ’Who draw up these lists, for whose interests are these lists drawn, what parameters do these lists use as determinants of who is to be ranked 1st or who is to be ranked 1000th asides what is obtainable on Google.comand does the fact that University of Ibadan, Ibadan did not appear on a list dispute that the compilers of this list in mass come to UI by all means necessary(exchange programs inclusive), to not see the good side of UI and compile a better list if need be, rather, they come to UI to learn our Indigenous languages and other disciplines from our tutors so as to be better students of knowledge.
Dear friend, you posit that Nigeria is yet to earn respect and collateral value nurturing anything to worldwide standards. Really? Do you really mean this? Sir, please, do not say this in unrestricted fora. Before I jump to a conclusion on this, what is your definition of worldwide standards? Sir, who is the 1986 Nobel Laureate? Sir, who authored Things Fall Apart- a book translated to more than 50 official languages? Sir, who is Emeka Anyaoku? Maybe when you amplify what worldwide standards means, we can have a duel on this.
Dear friend, your emphasis on lists beats me (Top 1000 colleges and Universities list, list of IMF, World Bank, UN citing a study/research/­survey). It severely boxes me to a corner. Sir, the University of Ibadan do not, I reiterate, do not need a list to receive Grants periodically from the MacArthur Foundation neither does it need any list to produce individuals worthy in character, learning and sound judgment that will impact positively to their local community and the world at large.
Dear friend, at long last, you attest to the fact that Wole Soyinka is a value brought to the world by the University of Ibadan. However, stating that jealousies and a flawed leadership was the reason why an Institute wasn’t built in his name is a faulty assertion. Sir, I will point here that, the University of Ibadan do not operate in such manner. Though, such may be done over there in the Ivy League schools, I will state here emphatically that my alma-mater does not seek to be a replica, a carbon copy of such schools. We are the University of Ibadan, and not the University College, Ibadan which was/is an affiliate of the University of London. As an addendum, rather than build an institute built in his name, the University of Ibadan had organized several events in his honour. Of note was at the 66th Foundation Day of my alma-mater.
Sir, we are not interested in seeking reputation based on the achievement of a particular person. Instead, we build a reputation based on the collective efforts of every student, every lecturer, every administrator and every member of staff-academic and non-academic. We are UI, a school marching on to greatness with the individual efforts of U and I!
Dear friend, ever heard of Covenant University? It is a Nigerian University and has a Nobel prize winner on its faculty. This defeats your proposition that no Nigerian University has a Nobel Peace winner on its faculty. Quoting Oluwafemi Oyesile, a Mechanical Engineering product of the University of Ibadan, ‘To say that UI has not been of relevance


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s