A Landmark Handover Ceremony as Njala University Officially Inaugurates Professor Koroma as Substantive VC&P
Credit: Public Relations Assistant, Njala University ( Ayuba Koroma)
Njala University, 31st August 20222- On 31 August 2022, in the Senate Room of the University Secretariat, Njala Campus, members of Njala University witnessed another smooth and well-attended transfer of authority between the former Acting Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Andrew Augustine Baimba, and the substantive Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Bashiru Mohamed Koroma.
The Conference of Vice-Chancellors and Principals (CVCP-SL) Chairman, Reverend Professor Edwin J.J. Momoh, mentioned that the ceremony was larger and more peaceful than the one before it. Professor Momoh also expressed his pleasure in working with the new Vice-Chancellor and Principal, describing him as a highly experienced Administrator.
Explaining the processes leading to the recommendation for the appointment of Professor Bashiru Mohamed Koroma as the substantive Vice-Chancellor and Principal of Njala University, the Chancellor of Njala University who also served as the ceremony's Chairman, stated that Professor Koroma’s appointment underwent a very transparent selection and rigorous process through a committee comprised of very senior academics, representatives from the Ministry of Technical and Higher Education (MTHE) and the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC).
Professor Andrew Baimba described his service to his alma mater as a privilege and an honour, adding that he feels pleased to have completed the three main tasks for which the Government of Sierra Leone sent him to Njala University as Acting Vice-Chancellor and Principal, stating that his objectives included ensuring a smooth transition, supervising a functional and management review of the University, and overseeing the recruitment of a permanent Vice-Chancellor and Principal.
Despite significant challenges, the former Acting Vice-Chancellor and Principal stated that his accomplishments span administrative, finance, procurement, and audit; estate and infrastructure; and academic matters. He presided over a Management and functional restructuring of Academic Departments and Schools that was validated and endorsed by the University Senate and ratified by Court, established the Grounds, Sporting and Recreational Committee, and the University Farm Committee; returned the past glory of the University's Animal Production Department, rehabilitated the Njala University Oil Palm Clonal Garden; and ensured transactions undertaken by the University are pre-audited before payment.
Professor Baimba also supported the rehabilitation of the Lone Building complex at the Freetown Location and the road and hostel rehabilitation on Bo Campus, took proactive steps to lay the groundwork using a transition committee report as the basis for a draft Position Paper on Bonthe Technical Institute Management, and paid 35% of the salaries of newly recruited staff who were not yet absorbed into the government payroll. He also visited the campuses to gain a firsthand understanding of the prevailing realities on each campus.
After being officially inaugurated as the Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Bashiru Koroma urged everyone to strive to put Njala University first in all of their deliverables, adhere to and support the complete application of the University's statutes, policies, regulations, and guidelines without fear or favour, offer opportunities for alumni associations and partners to pool resources for payback mechanisms and take greater cognizance of the Government and people of Sierra Leone for similar supports.
These aspirations, according to Professor Koroma, are attained by relying on three complementary pillars: robust revenue generation and mobilization, financial discipline, and academic and administrative enhancement and discipline.
The new VC&P is focused on improving the quality of service delivery, implementing a part of the University's restructuring plan, extending the University's Agriculture programme and other projects in community contract farming, agribusiness management, and other business enterprises; building partnerships for infrastructural development and entrepreneurship; and actively cooperating with the Government of Sierra Leone via the Ministry of Technical and Higher Education in partnership with the Alumni of Njala University to bring solar mini-grids by phases to the University, and instituting a systematic financial mobilization, transparent financial management, and open reporting.
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