Indications have merged that the partnership between Afe Babalola University Ado-Ekiti, Nigeria and Durban University of Technology, South Africa is on full course, with both parties eager to ensure it bears fruit of sustainable success within the shortest possible time. This was evident when the Ag. Vice Chancellor of as ABUAD, Professor E. Smaranda Olarinde, FCArb. and select officials of the institution met with Dr. Emem Anwana of the DUT to review the details of the partnership between both institutions.

Professor Olarinde harped on the need to move the hand of the clock full circle. She opined that the process must take into consideration three-pronged objectives, which are: to deepen intellectualism, foster collaborative research and Linkages. She stated that the implementation phase was critical, which all present at the meeting agreed. ABUAD director of ICT and the Provost of Social and Management Sciences harped on the imperativeness of a win-win situation being the pathway to sustain the partnership. The former said all grey areas can be resolved with the benefits both institutions.

The DUT representative, Dr. Emem Anwana reaffirmed the choice of ABUAD as peculiar given the history, trajectory and impact which the institution has recorded its short existence of 12 years. She stated that the Founder and Chancellor, Aare Afe Babalola is enigmatic and has given to humanity a gift that should endure in perpetuity. Dr. Anwana said her tour of the University was “mind-blowing”. She listed the ABUAD Multi-System hospital, Farm and Industrial Research Park as an eloquent testimony to a tradition and commitment for excellence. She added that these clusters of initiatives were “wonderful and left her mesmerized”. She opined that Aare Afe Babalola has left high stakes which is difficult to rival.

The DUT representative, specified that when she got to the ABUAD Independent Power Project (IPP), she wondered what the government was doing if “a single individual” could power all these initiatives. She concludes that government should do better if a single individual can do all of these. She asserted that ABUAD is an institution she was proud to associate with and that her institution, DUT, was enthusiastic to ensure that the partnership is an instant success.

For the Provost of the College of Social and Management Sciences, Professor Ademola Azeez, the cost is clear for the partnership to take-off. He stated that in ABUAD, the can-do spirit and the readiness to break new grounds was a recipe which has contributed to the success of the institution hitherto. The Head of Peace, Conflict and Strategic Studies, Dr. Oyinloye, an alumnus of the DUT, harped on the need for collaboration and partnership between ABUAD’s department of Peace, Conflict and Strategic Studies and the Centre for the Study of Non-Violence at the DUT. The DUT’s representative, Dr. Anwana assured that she would ensure that the initiative is given the upmost consideration once she returns to South Africa.

Before the meeting ended, the Ag. Vice-Chancellor, Professor Olarinde, made further contributions for considerations which were fully endorsed the DUT representative. The Vice-Chancellor requested that a post-doctoral fellowship programme, faculty exchange between both institutions, establishment of a joint research programme, a joint research Chair, a DUT-ABUAD Annual Research Conference and DUT-ABUAD Gender Justice Clinic to be established as priorities.

The closing ceremony ended with presentation by the Ag. Vice-Chancellor of ABUAD, Professor Olarinde gave branded souvenirs, OGEES books/journals and professor Olarinde’s co-edited books to the DUT representative, with firm assurances by Dr. Anwana for ABUAD to consider a visitation to the DUT as soon as possible. Dr. Anwana once again thanked ABUAD for the warm hospitality.