The Vice-Chancellor of Niger Delta University, Bayelsa State, Nigeria, Professor Samuel Edoumiekumo, has said that the school is committed to building worthy ambassadors that will promote entrepreneurship and wealth creation across Nigeria and Africa at large. The Vice-Chancellor made this known while speaking at the recently held 9th African Leadership Magazine Persons of the Year presentation ceremony.

The Vice-Chancellor, who received the African Educationist of the Year Award – 2020, stated that “for my team and I, we are committed to building our young students to become employers of labour.” Continuing, the Vice-Chancellor maintained that “we understand that unemployment is a major problem in Nigeria and Africa at large and want to change the narrative with our programmes.” 

“We have a robust system that encourages every student to select a skill that must develop while pursuing their degree programme at the University. In addition to the University’s entrepreneurship centre, which provides a practical frame of reference for the students, the skills shape them for life after a university degree,” he said. 

The event, which held virtually, had over 300 leading Africans from various fields, including business, politics and diplomacy. Some of the key guests included H.E. Nana Akufo-Addo, President of Ghana; H.E. Goodluck Jonathan, former president of Nigeria; H.E. Ernest Bai Koroma, former president of Sierra Leone; Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization; H.E. Graca Machel, widow of late Nelson Mandela and former minister; Senator Manqoba Khumalo, Minister of Commerce, trade and Industry, Eswatini; Hon. Samuel D Tweah, Minister of Finance, Liberia, Dr Vera Songwe, Executive Secretary, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa. 

Professor Edoumiekumo, a professor of economics and distinguished scholar, emerged winner of the African Educationist of the Year 2020 after scoring over 50% of the total votes cast in the category in a keenly contested poll. 

While receiving the award, the vice-chancellor spoke glowingly about the University’s serial successes in delivery best in class academic services to students. He also acknowledged the strides by students of the University both locally and internationally while inviting Africans to explore the opportunity of partnering with the institution. 

The African Leadership Magazine Persons of the Year, which is in its 9th year, is an annual award reserved for distinguished Africans who have blazed the trail in the year under review. A shortlist of nominees are selected from results gathered via a Call for the nomination – traditionally promoted via paid online and offline campaigns across the continent, Europe, and the Americas. The call for nomination is the first step in a multi-phased process.