On assumption of duty on Thursday, 11th February, 2021, after the momentous handover to the 3rd substantive Vice-Chancellor of Alex Ekwueme Federal University Ndufu Alike, Ebonyi State, Prof. Sunday Oge Elom, on Wednesday, 10th February, 2021, by the former Vice- Chancellor, Prof. Chinedum Uzoma Nwajiuba, the new VC affirmed his readiness and determination to take the one decade old, fast growing ivory tower and the most serious public university in Nigeria, to the next level.
Prof. Elom made the assertion during a chat with the University PRO, in his office, on assumption of duty. VC started by expressing his excitement for what he said is a privilege and great honour, for him to be appointed 3rd VC of AE-FUNAI “ and so I am happy and glad and thankful to God and the university community for accepting me”, he enthused. He made bold to state that it is his 33 years uninterrupted service in the university, spanning from Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) to Ebonyi State University (EBSU) and now AE-FUNAI, so he has seen it all.
The new VC also said he has 14 years uninterrupted post professorial academic and administrative experience in the university system from EBSU to AE-FUNAI, occupying most administrative positions, including Head of Department and Dean of Faculty, several times, Dean of Students Affairs, and here he is the foundation Dean of Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences and thereafter became Deputy Vice- Chancellor for 2 tenures under the Prof. Nwajiuba Administration, before the current position as VC. “…so I am fully prepared for the job, mentally, physically and otherwise”, he adduced.
Prof. Elom elucidated that having worked with Prof. Nwajiuba to transform the university to the remarkable extent, his priorities will be to sustain, consolidate and expand on all their achievements as the mission and key drivers of his administration. To achieve these, he is welcoming everyone on board “I want all hands to be on deck. University is beyond one individual. It is a collective thing. I want to invite everybody on board so we can take the university to the next level”. He further said that “ Our VC (Prof. Nwajiuba) has done very well, so as he said, he has raised the flag, so I want everybody to join hands to keep the flag flying, to make sure we achieve the vision of the university to become a world class university”
He reiterated that the relationship with the Unions in the University have been very cordial and that he encouraged the unions in their recent meeting, to sustain and continue with the existing cordial working relationship with the university management, even as they continue with the national strike, praying that all issues bordering on the ongoing strike be resolved amicably as soon as possible. Prof. Elom assured that he would address the students shortly after the inaugural Senate meeting and another meeting with management and staff. Meanwhile he urged the students to remain calm and focused on their studies, while management is doing its best to ensure they are comfortable and that the academic flow is not interrupted.
Prof. Elom revealed that his guiding principle is drawn from the book of Colossians Chapter 3 verse 23 – “Whatever you do, do it heartily as unto God and not unto man”, declaring that those words have been guiding him in all his service years till the present moment. He there called on everyone to imbibe the principle to avoid sycophants, eye service, gossips, slander and get more focused and achieve more.