“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest” – Benjamin Franklin
By Fatai Ibrahim
The Federal College of Education (FCE) Kontagora is located along Kwangwara-Bolobolo Road in Niger State, the North Central Geo-political Zone of the nation.
The college was established in September, 1978 as Federal Advanced Teachers’ College (FATC) during the military administration of General Olusegun Obasanjo. This follows the recommendation of Sir Eric Ashby report of 1970 and subsequent promulgation of principal act cited as Federal College of Education Decree no. 4 of 1986 and as amended in Decree no. 6 of 1993.
The college, which was initially affiliated to the University of Ilorin, became an autonomous institution in 1989 under the supervision of National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE). The Federal College of Education, Kontagora, among others, was purposely established to prepare teachers at the Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE) level and to run other related programmes.
Prof. Faruk Rashid Haruna, the 11th Provost of the college was appointed by the Federal Government on April 10, 2018. A man of many parts, the Professor of Exercise and Sports Science has recorded unprecedented landmark and academic achievements in the last 30 months at the helms of affairs in the institution where teachers are moulded morally and academically to impart knowledge on yet unborn generations.
A round peg in a round hole, Prof. Haruna, through the intervention from TETfund, has planted magnificent and world standard facilities in the college to aid students’ learning and promote academic excellence among the teaching and non-teaching staff.
A man of destiny and a seasoned administrator per excellence, his pedigree, antecedents, exposure and intellectual acuity traverse all parts of national life of the people in the country.
The developmental strides and transformation he has brought to bear as a former Provost of Niger State College of Education, Minna, remain legendary. His administrative acumen and dexterity as the current Provost of the institution is exemplary. His unique selling point remains prudent management of resources, which include laudable projects at the college.
As can be seen in legacy projects put in place for the common good of the students and the entire college as well as the community at large, it will not be out of place to call for more TETfund intervention for the institution.
It was American author, Robert Collier (1885 –1950), who said: “Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out,” and this aptly captures the Midas touch of what Prof. Haruna is doing at the institution as per his performance and result-oriented projects since his appointment.
The Professor, a prudent manager of resources, is a master planner when it comes to achieving targets and goals as can be seen from list of projects to his credit. The college is one of those in the nation effectively utilizing allocation from TETFund in line with the extant laws.
Meeting targets is not new to the erudite scholar because as a former Provost of Niger State College of Education, Minna, he brought and exhibited dexterity and pedigree to bear thus becoming a shining example for others to follow in developmental strides.
In his two years as Provost of the college, Prof. Haruna has constructed Lecture Theatre for School of Secondary Education (Language Programmes); Full-scale renovation of the completely burnt down Home Economics Block; remodeling and attachment of a modern toilet each to an office for two blocks of staff offices, in the School of Secondary Education (Vocational Programmes); renovation of the Main Language Hall at School of Secondary Education (Language Programmes); construction of model office in Business Education Department, School of Secondary Education (Vocational Programmes); construction of one storey office building for staff of School of Secondary Education(Arts and Social Science Programmes); construction of one storey building for staff of School of General Education and construction of lecture theatre for School of Secondary Education (Science Programmes) among numerous others in the college.
Other tangible achievements he recorded include; facilitating the release of TETfund Academic Staff Training and Development (AST&D), conference attendance, institution-based research, book publications, teaching practice intervention grant for the College, amicable resolution of the over six years lingering industrial dispute on conversion/change of Cadre of Academic Instructors, facilitating and hosting of ICT-based capacity building workshop in partnership with Digital Bridge Institute and Nigerian Communication Commission(NCC) for staff of the College.
Just recently, precisely last month, the College of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU) chapter of the college, ably led by its chairman, Comrade Usman Nagogo Sonfada, gave an award of excellence to the Provost in recognition of his giant strides and uncommon transformation in the institution, held at its Col. Sani Bello.
It takes a man of courage and clear vision like Prof. Haruna to achieve all the aforementioned in just two years of ascending the helms of affairs at the college.
Greek philosopher, Aristotle (384-322 B.C.), surely had the erudite professor in mind many years back when he said, “You will never do anything in this world without courage, it is the greatest quality of the mind, next to honor.”
Ibrahim can be reached through email@example.com.