Friday 14 April 2023



Your Excellency, 

Senator Nurudeen Ademola Jackson Adeleke, 

The Executive Governor, 

Osun State. 

14th April, 2023

A major welcome relief came to the entire people of Ijesaland yesterday, 13th April, 2023 with the second birth of University of Ilesa which was first officially pronounced on Thursday, 31st March, 2022; whose establishment bill was passed by Osun State House of Assembly on Monday, 4th August, 2022; became a legal entity on Tuesday, 27th September, 2022 with the appendage of the signature of the former Governor Adegboyega Oyetola; and licensed to operate with immediate effect by the National Universities Commission (NUC) on Thursday, 10th November, 2022.

The apprehension in  Ijesaland is mostly likely to abate in that one project of utmost importance to the generality of Ijesaland in the University of Ilesa is about to take-off eventually after five months of its official licencing.

Second birth of this same University because the previous administration had in November 2022 inaugurated both the University Governing Council and the Principal Officers before their eventual dissolution during the presentation of the University of Ilesa Review Committee Report on Thursday, 16th March 2023 at the premises of the new University of Ilesa. 

May we all Ijesas congratulate ourselves again everywhere in the globe for witnessing the eventual take-off of the first ivory tower in a community that has produced the first lawyer in Nigeria in Alexander Sapara Williams; the first Business Tycoon known Millionaire in Nigeria, Candido Da Rocha; first indigenous enterprise model, Osoomalo; Industrial Giants such Pa Isaac Ojo Ajanaku, Sir Lawrence Omole, Pa A. Awomolo, Pa Isaac Akinmokun; Renowned Jurists such as Justice Kayode Eso, Justice Omotunde Ilori; first female Academic Staff in Nigeria University and first female Professor of History in Nigeria, Prof Bolanle Awe; first female qualified Engineer in Nigeria, Engr (Mrs) Olu Maduka; Political Icons such as Sir Odeleye Fadahunsi, Chief Bola Ige; several international academia of repute such as Prof Hezekiah Oluwasanmi, Prof Olajuwon Olayide, Prof Oyewusi Ibidapo-Obe, Prof Oye Gureje; renowned International Diplomats such as Prince A. Haastrup; Prof Bolaji Akinyemi; Amb. Dapo Fafowora; etc.

Our story in Ijesaland on that of having a University is that of 'It's better late than never'!

To this extent, we express our profound appreciation to His Excellency, Governor Senator Nurudeen Ademola Jackson Adeleke for identifying with the age long desire of the good people of Ijesaland in kick-starting the long awaited University of Ilesa with the fresh appointment of a new set of University Principal Officers. 


The Administration and Management of a University System today where one will be saddled with the multifarious challenges of managing Vibrant Students, Competitive Academic Programmes, Sophisticated Academic Staff, Well-informed Non-Academic Staff, Statutory Government Bodies, Dynamic Contemporary International Academic Research, Increasingly Demanding University Stakeholders; Dwindling Finances & Endowments; High Expectant University Host Community; Complicated Crisis & Conflicts; Need for Sustainability & Growth; etc no doubt requires the best competitive hands if the vision of establishing the University of Ilesa is to be fully materialised.

Once again, we thank our Excellency for his choice of one of our Sons in Ijesaland, Prof Taiwo Olufemi Asaolu as the Vice Chancellor of this nascent University. 

We have no doubt about the Academic prowess, huge competence, enterprise loaded, and visionary capacity of one of our own in Prof Taiwo Asaolu BUT we would have preferred him to emerge from a competitive contest with other similarly qualified candidates in order to ensure that the best available hand emerges at the end of the exercise. 

This is the universal practice in the academic industry which has greatly assisted from separating the grain from the chaff among all prospective candidates and this time-tested procedure has immensely contributed to the performance of emerging candidates in office as against a procedure of hand-picking like we have in the case at hand. 

The danger in the current approach employed is that  the University Principal Officers are likely to have their allegiance to their Political Appointors as against their Academic Community. 

Secondly, this approach could also threaten the University's adherence to the principle of University Autonomy in the process of its policy and day-to-day running. 

Thirdly, this approach could further complicate and undermine the capacity of the University for independent decision-making since the University Governing Council will also be solely appointed by the Political Class. 

A situation where the State Government unilaterally selects both the University Governing Council and Principal Officers may eventually lead to a relationship of "YES DADDY" between the University and the State Government which is considered detrimental to the success and growth of the new University. 

The approach of hand-picking of its Principal Officers will also deny the nascent University from picking from a competitive Vision, Workplan, Contemporary Experience, Analytical Skills, Problem-Solving Capacities, Entrepreneurial Acumen, Sustainability Strategies, and Growth & Expansion Plans, of all would-be contesting candidates.

 And at the end and more importantly, the best candidate emerging from the exercise will be able to give an undertaking on his would-be deliverables in office. And all stakeholders will then be in position to develop their own set of monitoring indicators to continually appraise the candidates' performance in office. This becomes a target that successful candidates will be aiming to achieve and possibly surpass. 

Now that we have lost the opportunity to have the Principal Officers emerging from the well-known international best practice of competitive contest, we are now left with the option of appealing to their individual conscience to courageously rise to the challenge of their respective professional callings. 

The State Government will no doubt be interested in their success in office as the primary stakeholder.

The Students will be interested in how the University Principal Officers organise their studies in a way that make the University's products become the most sought after in the labour market. 

The Academic Staff and Non-Academic Staff will be waiting to see how the Principal Officers create a conducive and enabling working environment where ASUU and NASSU strikes are alien to the University. 

The host community in Ijesaland will be keenly monitoring how the Principal Officers sustain a friendly relationship between the University Community and Ijesaland Community; Socio-economic Impact Enhancement; Employment Generation Opportunities; etc.

In conclusion, as we welcome the Principal Officers into their respective portfolio within the University of Ilesa, they should daily realise that all eyes are on them. And that they would need to work very hard with visible and sustainable results to begin to earn the respect and confidence of majority of stakeholders!

Your first 24-hour in office is gone!

Best of luck from all in Ijesaland!

*Asiwaju Yinka Fasuyi

The Asiwaju of Ijesaland

Oke Baba Okuta Villa, Ilesa

14th April, 2023

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