A total of 215 students of the Covenant University, Ota in Ogun,were conferred with  First Class degrees at its 2018/2019 convocation  on Friday.

The Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Aaron Atayero, performed the ceremony  during the instititution’s  14th Convocation  and  the Conferment of Honourary Doctorate Degrees, and Presentation of Prizes.

The event took place within the institution’s campus  in Ota.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 1,580 students graduated for the  academic session.

They comprised:  215 first class honours, 668 second class upper honours, 415 second class lower, nine  in third class and 239 post-graduates.

Miss Ajia Motunrayo, a student in the  Department of Petroleum Engineering, College of Engineering, emerged the best  student with a Cumulative Grade Point Average( CGPA) of 5.0.

NAN reports that this was  the first time that the institution would be attaining such a feat, the closest being the 2016 convocation where Master Winner Deji-Folutile from Department of Architecture had 4.97.

Atayero in his address  noted that education is a powerful weapon which can be used to change the world and achieve sustainable economic growth, especially, on the  African continent.

” The institution is committed to supporting and encouraging research and development works aimed at providing innovative solutions to societal problems and enhancing the quality of life as  enunciated in the Sustainable Development Goals ( SDGs) agenda ,” he said.

The V-C  said that Covenant University had  continued to provide quality education by providing lifelong learning opportunities through granting public access to resources of the institution’s Centre for Learning.

Atayero also said that the institution’s curriculum was designed to raise a new generation of leaders who would be  spiritually and mentally equipped to restore the dignity of the blackman.

Also speaking, the Chancellor of the Institution, Dr David Oyedepo,  said that  there was the need for Nigeria and other African countries to properly fund education so as to achieve meaningful development.

Oyedepo also said that there was the need for Africa to build new nations by placing more priority on qualitative  education.

“Until one is transformed through education, he or she cannot transform his environment, society or nation, ” he said.

The chancellor noted that  the only way  that Nigeria and other African countries could have equal rights like other  great nations  and not be  seen as second class  citizens was through investment in education.

In his keynote address, Dr Monisoye Afolabi, a former Director of Business Environment, USAID Trade Hub, Accra, Ghana, said that  Africa was likely to  have more population than China and India with time.

He said the continent should  take advantage of its population and invest in education.

Afolabi stressed the need for African   countries  to spend 30 per cent of their annual budgets on  the education sector in order to ensure  self reliance.

“This is when education can take its rightful place in the development of Africa .” he said.

 Prof.Abubakar Rasheed, the Executive Secretary of  the National Universities Commission (NUC),   said that  the commission would do everything possible to support the 173 universities in the country.

Rasheed also said  that the commission would  support innovative and flexible programmes across the tertiary institutions.

The don  commended Covenant University for its  excellent performance and its implementation of  the strategies designed by the commission for universities in the country. (NAN)