University of Africa, Toru-Orua gets new DVC

By Aherhoke Okioma

Authorities of the University of Africa, Toru-Orua in Sagbama Local Government Area of Bayelsa State have announced the appointment of Professor Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, as Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic).

Vice-Chancellor of the Institution, Prof. Kingston Nyamapfene, announced this after an Extra-Ordinary Senate Meeting of the institution. He said that the appointment, which is subject to ratification by the Governing Council of UAT, was vital as a lot of work needed to be done to improve the academic fortunes of the university.

He was confident that the new DVC would bring his wealth of experience to bear in the performance of his duties. In his acceptance speech, Ayakoroma assured that he would contribute his quota to add value to the management of the University, adding that the first task was improving the visibility of the University to ensure that there is a significant increase in admission, The Trumpet gathered.

It was gathered that the pioneer Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Admin.) of the University, Professor Iwekumo Agbozu, has served out his two terms of two years each.

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Ayakoroma, untill his appointment, was the Head, Department of Theatre Arts, University of Africa, Toru-Orua (UAT).

He is a former Executive Director, Bayelsa State Council for Arts and Culture; and former Coordinator, Postgraduate Programme, Institute of Development Communication (ISDEVCOM) as well as the Department of Theatre & Cultural Studies, Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK). Ayakoroma was also the immediate past Executive Secretary/ CEO, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Abuja-FCT.

Meanwhile, Professor Innocent Ohiri, best known for the role of “Willy-Willy” in Hot Cash, a popular TV drama serial on Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Port Harcourt, in the 1980s and early 1990s, has felicitated with Ayakoroma.

Ohiri, who made this known during a call said Ayakoroma has been his close friend since their university days at Calabar and Ibadan, and that the new DVC convinced him to resign from NTA, Port Harcourt, where he was a senior producer/ director, in the mid-90s.

The don said that with Ayakoroma as DVC, considering his antecedents at Bayelsa State Council for Arts and Culture and Executive Secretary/CEO, NICO, he was confident that there would be an upsurge in student admission, thus improving the visibility of the university.

Ohiri thanked Nyamapfene for finding Ayakoroma worthy of the appointment. He also congratulated the Registrar of UAT, Dr. Akpoebi Adesi, saying that having two Thespians as principal officers in the university is a blessing to the Department. According to him, it behoves members of staff and students to draw from their experiences.

“Willy-Willy” also urged theatre arts students to look at the entrepreneurial prospects of the theatre profession, disclosing that he did that in his younger days, by taking his Wizi Travelling Theatre for performances at Calabar,

Benin City, Warri and many other cities. He added that his most challenging moment was when his fans in Warri insisted that he must vanish on stage, as they used to see on television.

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