Nigeria: Afe Babalola Tasks Scientists On Solutions to Pandemic

27 March 2020

Legal luminary and founder of Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti, ABUAD, Aare Afe Babalola, SAN, has challenged Scientists in his institution to engage in research in order to join other scientists in other parts of the world to find a lasting solution to the ravaging Covid-19 pandemic threatening to ground the country to a halt.

Worried and concerned that the pandemic which has led the Federal Government to close down all educational institutions in the country and limit the number of worshipers in church and mosque services to as low as between 20 and 50, partial lockdown of some states, Babalola invited scientists in ABUAD's Colleges of Engineering, Sciences and Medicine and challenged them to take advantage of the one-month blanket closure of schools, to engage in research and come up with workable solutions.

Babalola who made this known in a statement, said the move will make them globally relevant in the scheme of things.

He observed that Nigerian academics usually go to sleep after obtaining their Ph.Ds which should be the beginning of research and contributions to knowledge base and service to humanity as it is done in other parts of the world.

According to him, "I have always said that I am a big dreamer. I dream big. It is not a crime to dream, but it is a sin not to dream. I said much about this in my autobiography titled: 'Impossibility Made Possible'. For me, I don't believe anything is impossible."

The ABUAD founder said he will first dream about a thing and then go ahead and give it a try, adding, "If you dream of reaching the sun and you don't get there, you will at least get to the moon. The philosophy of this university is determination, industry and integrity. The combination of all these should gear you as scientists in your various fields to tackle this all-important assignment.

"I implore you all to go to work immediately. I promise to give all the necessary support. I am ready to provide the necessary funding and equipment for your research and come out with results that will be beneficial to humanity. With our huge investment in the Sciences, Medicine and Engineering, we should be able to do something tangible and reasonable to combat Covid-19

"It is common knowledge that we have invested heavily in the Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. When the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) came to our university in 2015, they marveled at the modern equipment in the 37 laboratories in our College of Engineering."

They acknowledged that 75 per cent of these equipment are not available in any university in Nigeria. They went further to describe our engineering programme as the 'Template for Engineering Education in Nigeria'.

Babalola said the university's 400-bed Multi-system Hospital which has the largest assemblage of modern medical equipment has been acknowledged as the best in Africa.

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