Former Dean, Faculty of Law, University of Nigeria, Enugu campus (UNEC), Professor Joy Ezeilo, has said that the Faculty decided to open the African Centre for Law and Good Governance in honour of Professor Ben Nwabueze for his contributions to Africa’s constitutional development.
Speaking at a ceremony to mark the end of her two-year tenure as dean, Ezeilo explained that Nwabueze, a constitutional lawyer, was the first indigenous dean of the faculty, stressing that he had contributed to the development and study of law in the university.
Ezeilo told guests including Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Charles Arinze Igwe that her administration completed over 60 projects within the two years she served as dean, stressing that the strides had helped to elevate the faculty to international standards.
She listed the projects as rehabilitation of lecture halls, administrative building, Moot court, upgrading and furnishing of board room, re-roofing, provision of seats, equipping the library, provision of computers and internet facilities among others.
She said the faculty was now partnering with Michigan State University, USA in staff members and students’ exchange programmes, among other academic collaborations, adding that two students of the faculty recently travelled on scholarship for the summer school programme on International Law, Arbitration, Negotiation, Contracts and Competitive Law at Michigan.
“We have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Dundee University that will grant our staff members who are interested in pursuing post-graduate degrees with the institution 50 per cent discount on tuition fee.
“Importantly, the PhD programme does not require students’ residency, as they will remain on their jobs at UNN, while visiting the United Kingdom (UK) at agreed flexible intervals.
“We have also entered an MoU with the University of Venda, South Africa and we hope it will be operationalised soon for the mutual benefit of both institutions in the areas of research, teaching and visitor’s scholars programme,” she stated.
Explaining that the faculty was looking for an endowment that could make it self-sufficient, she stated that it would use the 60th anniversary of the university to raise about N100m endowment for its works.
Ezeilo stated that a board of trustees for the fund had been set up, stressing that every class in the faculty was expected to contribute to the fund.
“We have also developed a Wall of Fame in Bronze, Silver, Gold, Diamond and Platinum categories to acknowledge those who contribute to the faculty. We shall be commemorating the 60th anniversary and will set up a Joint Trust Fund with the UNEC Law Alumni for sustainable scholarship and development of the faculty,” she added.
She said the successes recorded in the past two years could not have been possible without the support of the alumnae, friends and management of the institution and appealed that such be extended to her successor.
Speaking, Igwe commended Ezeilo for the good works, saying she would continue to be a reference point to other deans of the university.