Retired general and Former President Olusegun Obasanjo alongside 14,771 students, including two inmates from Enugu prisons will be graduating this Saturday in the seventh convocation of the National Open University of Nigeria(NOUN). The former president who will be the first Ph. D holder from the school will be awarded the Doctor of Philosophy in Christian Theology.
Speaking during a press briefing to herald the event, the Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof Abdalla Adamu stated that this year’s convocation was the most exciting and historic because it has the largest number of graduates since the school’s inception and the largest from any university in the country. The VC who was visibly excited added that no other University has done what NOUN has done as Former President Obasanjo will receive a doctorate award after reaching the age of over 80 years. Abdalla extolled the virtue of the Obasanjo adding that he started from the scratch and with humility has gotten to the stage he was.
“The University Senate has approved that he be awarded a Ph.d in Christian Theology. He did all the examination he was supposed to do. He did his proposal, his internal and external Defense. He subjected himself to the rigorous stage of academic world,” he said. He noted that Obasanjo who has opened the door of learning in the country has shown that one is never too old or powerful to learn, adding that learning was a humble process and that one can learn not just to get a job but for knowledge.
Adamu explained that the University was able to graduate the huge number of students because it has taken over the data management of its records from external vendor handling it before adding that students who were not able to graduate before because of missing results have been cleared. While speaking on the achievements of the school, the VC stated that the school has keyed into the federal government economic growth agenda with the establishment of a NOUN Business school which will take off soon.
The convocation ceremony will begin with a lecture on Friday with Prof Eghosa Osaghae, the VC of Igbinedion University as the guest speaker and on Saturday, the graduates will receive their certificates in Diploma, Bachelor Degree, Postgraduate diploma, Masters and Ph. D degree.