Kuni Tyessi in Abuja
A nine-man visitation panel has been constituted for Bingham University, established by the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA), and it is expected to look into the issue of several months unpaid salaries to staff.
Speaking during its inauguration recently in Jos, Plateau State, the Chairman of the board, Professor James Saliba said among other terms of reference, the panel is expected to assess the governance and administration of the institution at different levels and ascertain whether or not there is compliance with due process.
In his welcome address, the visitor to the university and ECWA President, Reverend Jeremiah Gado acknowledged Bingham University as â€˜a gift from Godâ€™, adding that every gift that comes from him has to be handled very well because it is very precious.
â€œWe are not out to find faults but to find out what is wrong and address it. ECWA is on a mission to have an everest of all universities beyond Nigeria. We will continue to pursue perfection and attain excellence because the God we serve is a God of excellence. The panel therefore, is our quest to pursue perfection and attain excellence for Bingham and ECWA. The eyes of the world are on us and even non-Christians expect us to do better than what we are doing now.â€
Responding on behalf of the panel, the former Vice-Chancellor of Kaduna State University, Professor Barnabas Williams Qurix, appreciated ECWA leadership for choosing them to serve, saying, â€œit is a privilege, even though, we are not wise enough to undertake the assignment, we trust that God will see us through. If there was a time that Bingham requires our support, the time is now that the church is facing challenges in accessing quality education.â€
Speaking after the inauguration ceremony to journalists, ECWA General Secretary, Rev. Yunusa Nmadu, said the idea of a visitation panel is statutory as it is in line with the laws guiding the establishment of universities in Nigeria to review the university governance at intervals.
He described as temporal the economic challenges it is currently facing, adding that the situation is not as precarious as being peddled in many quarters.
On what ECWA expects from the panel, Nmadu said, â€œour expectation is that the panel will do a thorough work and come up with suggestions to put the university on its right footing.â€
Members of the panel include Qurix; Mrs. Florence Dada, Mr. Daniel Gwaza, Professor Sunday Bassey, Professor Gabriel Motty, Mr. Godwin Williams, Dr. Ezekiel Adeleye and Professor James Saliba, the chairman.
Academic and non-academic staff members of the university had down tools in order to press home their demands as a result of several monthsâ€™ unpaid salaries and other allowances.