Alakijas donate ultra-modern law faculty to Crowther varsity
As a way of contributing their quota to human and national advancement, particularly in the law profession, Mr. Modupe and Mrs. Folorunsho Alakija, have donated an ultra-modern law faculty to the Ajayi Crowther University (ACU), Oyo State.
The three-storey building houses the entire law faculty consisting of four departments with offices for lecturers and head of departments.
The structure hosts moot courts for practical sessions, two libraries (a big library and e-library), students centre, seminar rooms and five big classrooms that can take up to 100 students. It also has a big auditorium that can accommodate about 750 people.
Pro-Chancellor of the university, Wole Olanipekun (SAN), in his welcome remarks at the inauguration of the facility, stated that the donation was an “uncommon contribution to the law profession”.
He said, “I thank God for the life of my brother and sister, (the benefactor). Anglican brought education to Nigeria and it is in furtherance of this, that the family of Alakija is donating this building to this institution. I am particularly appreciative for what you have done for the law profession, I must say this as a lawyer; this is the biggest law faculty in this country. We thank you for the advancement of knowledge and giving to humanity. We also thank you for beautifying our landscape.”
On his part, Emeritus Professor of Medicine, Prof. Oladipo Akinkungbe, who is also the Chairman, Board of Trustees of the institution, averred that the donation represents a major milestone in the life of ACU.
He said, “I cannot recall this size of donation from a couple or individual. They (Alakijas) are renowned for their style of quiet philanthropy. This Faculty of Law Complex is being donated without much prompting and soliciting. ACU can never thank the Alakijas enough for this elegantly finished, multi-functional faculty building. It is reputed to be the largest and modern law complex in the country.”
Also, a representatives of the proprietors, Most Rev. Michael Akinyemi, remarked that God has used the family in a big way to bring succour to the institution.
Oyo State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, who was represented by the Secretary of the State Government, Mr. Olalekan Alli, while commending the donors, admonished wealthy Nigerians to emulate their gesture.
“In this era of austerity, I want to congratulate the donors of this faculty. Having seen what you have done elsewhere, I am sure, this is just a tip of the iceberg. The Alakijas are extending the frontiers of knowledge. This is a clarion call to wealthy Nigerians to emulate this enviable feat,” he said.
Modupe Alakija’s in his address noted that the donation was a testimony, faithfulness, and love of God on his family”.
He said, “As a young man, I did not pay attention to academics. I rather indulged in drinking and partying to the extent that my father condemned me that I will serve my mates as their steward. Nobody expected anything good out of me. But later on, I realised my responsibility to myself, first and foremost, and then to others. I gathered my acts together and started working hard. I went to study law and was called to the Bar. This surprised everybody.
“I could remember in 1971 while standing in front of a High Court in Lagos, an old friend of mine whom we used to drink together saw me and said, “Alakija, when did you become a lawyer? And how?
He continued, “It is all the grace of God. Later, I met my amiable wife; we joined our resources together with a determination to build up a happy home. Today, I wish my father were alive. If he could be here today, he would have said: “No, this is not my son. I would have expected him in Ikoyi hotel serving drinks.
“I thank God for the lives of my children. Nobody thought anything good could come out of me. I have been able to raise children that attended some of the most prestigious universities in the world. They are now top executives in their own right. My wife has been of tremendous support too.”
Mrs. Alakija on her part intoned, “God has supplied all my needs according to His riches in glory. I am not talking about material needs alone, but God’s protection over me, my boys and my sweetheart, Modupe. That, we are alive and basking in His glory is enough testimony.”