Sat 16 Mar at 01:11pm

A 6-man delegation from the University of Louisville. Kentucky, USA arrived in Yenagoa, to develop the partnership with the Bayelsa Medical University, Yenagoa in the field of Medicine, Medical Sciences, Cancer research and the needs of the State in Primary Health Care. The team was led by a Prof. Craig Blakerly, Dean Faculty of Public Health and included Prof. Neal Dunlap, Professor of Oncology, Mrs. Tammy Thomas, Associate Dean Academic Affairs, Dr. AbdulRasul Ramji, Professor and Associate Dean-International partnerships, Karan Chavis Geneva, Chief of Staff University of Louisville Medical College and Mrs. Zainab Abubakar, Assistant to the UAT Provost of the College of Health Sciences, welcomed by the Commissioner of Education Honourable Jonathan Obuebite and the Management Team of BMU led by the Acting Vice Chancellor Professor Ebitimitula Nicholas Etebu at the Council Chambers of BMU. The Commissioner of Education Honourable Jonathan Obuebite on behalf of His Excellency the Governor of Bayelsa State Henry Seriake Dickson and Visitor of the Bayelsa Medical University welcomed the delegation to the State of Bayelsa. Commissioner Obuebite emphasized the importance the restoration government placed on Health and Education for the people of Bayelsa State. He lauded the Governors investment in both sectors and the results that have been yielded since he has been in office. The Honourable Commissioner promised his full support for the success of the partnership between the University of Louisville and the Bayelsa Medical University. Welcoming the team Ag. Vice-Chancellor, Bayelsa Medical University (BMU), Yenagoa Professor Ebitimitula N. Etebu, a distinguished Prof. of Anatomical Pathology, an Honorary Fellow of the Nigerian Council of Physicians and Natural Medicine, former Commissioner of Health said the visit was a follow up of the MOU that was signed between the University of Louisville and the Bayelsa medical university in November 2018 in the USA. He thanked the delegation for their numerous contributions in the field of medical science and that it was a great honour to work with them. He informed those present that the establishment of the Bayelsa Medical University, Yenagoa was one of the great achievements of His Excellency Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson, the Executive Governor of Bayelsa State. He said he wholeheartedly shared the vision of the Governor in establishing such a specialized university that will be highly rated globally for the training of persons in the different aspects of medical science as well as providing state-of-the art medical facilities in the institution for the benefit of humanity generally. Professor Etebu stressed that the formal recognition of the Bayelsa Medical University by the National University Commission (NUC), Abuja on 31st January 2019 was a testimony of the hard work that had been put in by the Governor and the Management of the institution in the last couple of months to kick-start academic activities by April 2019. He said this collaboration with Louisville University will spur him to work harder to bring about the fulfilment of the MOA. The Acting Registrar, Dr. Akpoebi Adesi, informed the guests that the University is currently running with the vision to become one of the leading universities in the world within the next ten years. He said that university is not only about structures but processes and efficiency. He highlighted the components that make up a system to include: people, rules and tools. He added that with the crop of professionals currently at the University it was bound to succeed. The Registrar also informed the guests that the Registry Department has set up a Learning and Development Unit to ensure that those in the support system are developed. “If the Support Unit is weak, the whole academic system will collapse”, he added. Also speaking Mr. Benaiah Oye the Project Coordinator commented that the infrastructure of BMU will be ready for the launch of Phase 1 the School of Foundation Studies in April 2019 and Phase 2 is under way for the launch of the 24 Undergraduate Programmes in October 2019. He emphasized that digitalization is paramount for the success of the university and this is being put in place with a robust infrastructure. Mr. Theo Theodorou the Consultant to the State on Education and a member of the BMU Management Team welcomed the focus of the University of Louisville on internationalization and was very pleased to hear the commitment of the delegation to develop transnational education with BMU. This is in line with the vision of the Visitor and would offer students international exposure in their academic studies and in the field of research. The Provost Professor Abdul Nasidi OON who was the link person between BMU and the University of Louisville summarized the purpose of the visit by the team from Louisville and was sure that they have now found a strong partner in Africa. He will leave no stone unturned to make the partnership a successful one. In his response Dr. AbdulRasul Ramji, Professor and Associate Dean-international partnerships Louisville University promised that all will be done to fulfill the terms of the MOA and that the visit was to determine the areas of a mutual exchange that would be beneficial to both Universities. Prof. Neal Dunlap, Professor of Oncology thanked the university, for the invitation and outlined the purpose of their visit which was to inspect and observe the facilities of BMU and the health sector in Bayelsa State. He further emphasized that he and the team looked forward to focus on areas of cooperation between the universities. This would cover the management of the teaching hospital, setting up the BMY Faculties, working together to develop the academic programmes in particular the curricula, assist in the practices of admissions, record keeping, examinations and information dissemination. They welcomed the opportunity to assist in enhancing BMU’s vision and benefit from their many years of experience in the health sector. He added that, “We believe Bayelsa Medical University Yenagoa is progressing well and by the time we leave here, and from what we have seen on ground we will strive to work harmoniously together”. Present at the meeting were the Principal Management staff Prof. Paingha J. Alagoa (Deputy Vice Chancellor), Professor Olu Osinowo, professor in cardio-vascular surgery Prof. Uche Owundiegwu, a gynecologist, Mr. Geoffrey Alagba, Ag. Bursar and other members of the BMU team. Also present at the ceremony were some top Government functionaries such as Members of the Bayelsa State Executive Council, Mrs. Monica Azazi-Olarinde, Director General Bayelsa State Medical Services Agency, a key member of the team that was instrumental in the development of the link with the University of Louisville and the signing of the MOA. The team visited several institutions in the state such as the Bioresearch Centre in Odi, the site of the Cancer institute in Toru-Orua, the University of Africa Toru-Orua, the Diagnostic Centre and the cardiovascular centre. In the afternoon the Louisville team paid a courtesy call to His Excellency Governor Henry Seriake Dickson, Executive Governor of Bayelsa State. His Excellency who was accompanied by the Deputy Governor Gboribigha John Jonah, his deputy Chief of Staff, Commissioner for Education Hon. Jonathan Obuebite, Commissioner for Trade and Investment Mrs. Funkazi Koroye-Crooks, other government officials and the press. <br> Dr. Akpoebi Adesi Registrar

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