…gives scholarship to students

From Emmanuel Adeyemi Lokoja

In commemoration of the second anniversary of the death of the renown Mechanical Engineer and astute administrator , Dr Joseph Oyeyani Makoju his family has promised to build a large Lecture theatre for the Federal University lokoja and give scholarship to outstanding students.

Engineer Joseph Makoju, an indigene of Okene, Kogi State was Special Adviser to three Nigerian Presidents on Electricity and Power and held various positions in National Electricity Power Authority (NEPA)
He was reputed to have successfully midwifed the Reforms that brought in the private sector in the generation and distribution of electricity power in Nigeria ,held various sensitive positions and was the immediate past group managing director of Dangote cement PLC .

At a second memorial lecture organised by the Federal University, lokoja which was attended by the creme de la creme of the society , the late Makoju was variously praised for his notable intellectual prowess,diligence, hard work profound humility and his service to the nation.

Makoju was described as a man who dedicated his entire life to providing the necessary infrastructure for economic development for the nation and provided selfless services to mankind.
In her response to various Goodwill messages, the wife of the deceased, Dr Gladys Makoju described her husband as a gentle, caring , disciplined man who served the nation selflessly without any record of misdeed and promised to keep the legacy of the late icon.

While thanking the federal University, lokoja for organising the memorial lecture,she disclosed that the family will build a large lecture theatre for the school and give scholarship to outstanding PHD students in Engineering.

In his opening remarks, the Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof. Olayemi Akinwumi while extolling the virtues of the erudite Engineer,said the late Dr Makoju has done so much to serve his father’s land and positively impacted several lives without making noise about it.

He said Engineer Makoju’s passion for quality education and pursuit for excellence was remarkable and that the university has decided to organise the annual lecture to honour him and to encourage students and the youths in the country that there’s honour in hard work and honesty.

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In his message, governor Usman Ododo who was represented by the commissioner of education, Wemi Jones described Engineer Makoju as a man of great accomplishments who had made the state proud during his life time.

He said to honour the late Engineer, the state government has established a university of science and technology in his home town so as to train the youths that will make the state proud in future just as the late Makoju did in his chosen profession.

The second memorial lecture entitled” the challenges of infrastructure development in Nigeria– the need for adequate Engineering capacity ” was delivered by Dr Felix Atume, former Registrar Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria ( COREN).

Dr Atume in his paper said infrastructure provides the basis for the development of any nation saying where adequate infrastructure is available, society is productive and can sustain a high standard of living.

The lecture expressed the urgent need for Federal government to include indigenous Engineers in all its infrastructural development endeavours which are currently being handled by foreign expatriates saying no nation develops while neglecting its own locally trained Experts.

He said any nation that ignores it’s University research works will not go far stressing that there’s no problem in the country that Professors in our various universities have not profered solutions to , but the political leadership in the country often does not bother to revisit these research works.

While calling on the federal government to embark on Public Private Partnership in the construction and maintenance of some of its road infrastructure in the country, he said government alone can not do it even as he frowns on the huge foreign debts incurred with little development to show for it.