By Kenneth Young-Emretiyoma (Editor, Urhobo Voice)
Chief Johnson M. Barovbe, JP, Managing Director of Westminster College, Lagos has made case for Agriculture as alternative to the dependence on crude oil in Nigeria and wants the Federal Government and Nigerians to pursue agriculture as means for sustenance and survival, just as he call that computer literacy be one of the prerequisites for the employment of teachers.
Similarly, the Lagos State Government and other notable personalities have showered encomiums on the College for its academic excellence.
Delivering his address during the 13th Valedictory Service and Graduation Ceremony of Westminster College, Lagos, the Tosogbe of Badagry & Proprietor, Chief Johnson Barovbe said the constant devaluation of the naira and the plummeting oil price will inevitably make the Federal Government and Nigerians to think agriculture and technology for sustenance and survival. Informing that Westminster College has acquired four plots of land close to the school for agricultural demonstration, Chief Barovbe said “we intend to make agriculture a practical and compulsory subject for all our students to enable them have the rudimentary knowledge of agriculture and fishery, in addition to other academic subjects.”
The School Proprietor also appealed to the Federal and State Governments to “make computer literacy a prerequisite for employment of teachers and lecturers into the teaching profession. Noting that most examinations for students all over the world are becoming computer based, Barovbe insists that by 2016 “a teacher or a lecturer that is not computer literate should have no business or place in the classrooms or lecture halls.”
On the occasion, which has First Executive Governor of Delta State, Senator (Olorogun) Felix Ibru, CON as Guest of Honour, and was held at the College’s premises 7-15 Johnson Barovbe Street, Idimu Road, the Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Oluranti Adebule praised Westminster College for its qualitative education. Represented by Dr. T.O. Akinola, the Deputy Governor commended the College for providing the graduating students with adequate tools, knowledge and education “to live a successful life.” She assured that the Lagos Government will continue to ensure that students learn in an environment that stimulates, even as she urged private school operators to ensure that the “welfare, intellectual and moral development of children are priority.”
Shortly before taking the first Bible reading for the Valedictory Service, which is Proverb 12: 1-28, Mrs Emuobo Ibru, wife of acclaimed Boardroom guru, Mr. Goodie Ibru, hailed Chief Barovbe for what she termed “his inclusive approach to the things he does.” Mrs Ibru also urged the graduating students to always trust in God and that by utilising their God-given talents they will achieve all they set out to achieve. The second Bible Reading, Romans 12: 1-16, was taken by Mr. Ogbeni.
In his short, thought-provoking sermon, Rev.Father Jacob Usman, a Catholic Priest, admonished every man and woman to aim at good works and not evil deeds. The cleric urged the Students to always think of success even outside the school, saying they should be the salt of the earth, make their lives good and delicious and make the school and not only the family proud.
Father Usman said students, parents, clergymen and indeed every human must not be established by wickedness. “Whatever your class or status, whatever the level we should not be established by wickedness, good deeds should speak for us. Let us be established in purity of heart and mind and great things will manifest in our lives,” the priest said. He urged the students to “be light and don’t desire darkness. Be focused, dedicated, look up to God and shun cultism…”
The event was indeed a day of honour for the Head Girl, Miss Ndakara Favour Okeoghene, who not only bagged the Deacon Gamaliel Onosode Award for the Overall Best Graduating Student in Academics but got two other awards including that of one of the Best Behaved Students. She was equally honoured with a gift by United Bank for Africa (UBA). The Gamaliel Onosode award was presented to Miss Ndakara Okeoghene by Senator Felix Ibru, while the awards for the most active prefects were presented to awardees by representative of the Lagos Deputy Governor and Mrs. Emuobo Ibru. Awards were also given to Parents of the Year, namely Barr. & Mrs. Ndakara, Mr & Mrs. Raji, Mr. & Mrs. Onuzuruike, Mr. & Mrs. Daniel, Mr. & Mrs. Ishmael and Mr, & Mrs. Kunle-Junaid. Some teaching and non-teaching Staff of the College also got award for dedication and long service. The West African Students Union also conferred an Award of Academic Excellence on Westminster College on the occasion.
A parent, Mrs Ojo praised Westminster College, describing it as a “place you should build your children.” Mrs Ojo said, “This is a school that enters students for WASC at SS 2 and they come out excellently in the examination. Westminster College is a school for the child that you love.” She informed that three of her Children, who got University degrees abroad, had their secondary school education at Westminster, with a fourth one among the graduating students.
A guest, Prince Emma Ogbon, a former Director of Flour Mills Nig Plc told The Urhobo Voice he was impressed with the quality of the College’s graduate and expressed satisfaction at the academic gains. “Westminster is an outstanding school in Lagos, and I recommend it for every parent. I congratulate Chief Johnson Barovbe, the Staff and Management of the College for a job well done,” Prince Ogbon said. On his part, another guest, Mr. Dan Oghoyone, CEO, Blueberry Hotels, Lagos also recommended Westminster College for its high academic performance, saying he was impressed with the performance of the students.
The event was spiced with cultural displays by Students of the College. The Yoruba, Igbo and Urhobo dance groups took turns to entertain the audience, just as Choreographers thrilled guests with the latest dance moves. A guest, Mrs. Edema also added colour by rendering a song in Ekiti language to the delight of many.
The occasion featured the graduation of 29 students in 2015 including three Students from the College’s International University Foundation Programme. The Foundation Programme graduates, who have equally gained admission abroad, are Divine Isaac (Law Student, University of Coventry, UK), Fasasi Quam (Engineering Student, University of Coventry, UK) and Ohwofa Samson A (Medical Student, University of Dubrecen, Hungary).
Other eminent personalities at the event include Prof. M.A. Danesi, former Dean, College of Medicine & Member, Board of Governors, Westminster College, Lagos; Sir (Chief) Simeon Ohwofa, President, Urhobo Social Club, Lagos; Chief Gabriel Otite (Number One), Chief Samson .E. Okuesa, Otunbaloro of Isolo, Lagos; Chief Vincent Ahwi, Okuesiri of Abraka; Barr. Jitobor Akanike, and others.
*GUEST of honour & first Executive Governor, Delta State, Senator (Olorogun) Felix O. Ibru, CON (2nd right); Managing Director, Westminster College, Lagos, Chief Johnson M. Barovbe, JP (right); 2015 Winner of Deacon Gamaliel Onosode Award for the Overall Best Graduating Student in Academics, Miss Ndakara Favour Okeoghene (2nd left) and her parents, Barr. & Mrs. Ndakara during the13th Valedctory Service & Graduation Ceremony of Westminster College, Lagos held on Tuesday July 14, 2015 at the College’s premises.
*2015 Graduating students of Westminster College, Lagos during their valedictory service. Seated with the students are Managing Director, Chief Johnson Barovbe, JP (5th left); Member, Board of Governors, Prof M.A. Danesi (6th left); Principal, Mrs. Helen Ayisire (7th left); and Vice Principal, Mr. Sunday Nwabuwe (7th right).
Westminster College, Plymouth University, UK partner on degree programmes
*Representatives visit College
By Kenneth Young-Emretiyoma
IN furtherance of Westminster College, Idimu-Lagos’ ongoing partnership with foreign Universities in the United Kingdom/Europe, North America, Asia among others, two representatives of Plymouth University, UK recently paid a visit to the leading institution over strategic partnership.
The representatives, Mr. Stuart Rennie and Dr. Mark Dixon visited the College on Thursday June 11, 2015 where they announced that Plymouth is partnering with Westminster for greater educational opportunities, including having students from the College completing their degree programmes in Plymouth after their One Year Foundation programme at Westminster College, Lagos.
In his welcome address, Chief Johnson Barovbe, JP, Managing Director, Westminster College told the visitors: “Westminster College, Lagos was founded in the year 2000, and the College has been graduating students for the past twelve years. Some of our students are now medical doctors, engineers, lawyers, accountants and university lectures.
“One of Westminster College, Lagos students, Miss Adepeju Olabimtan, now a practicing lawyer in Nigeria, became the first African student to be President of the Student Union in the University of Buckingham, UK in 2010.”
Expressing hope that the visit will bring good and progressive working partnership between Plymouth University and Westminster College, Chief Barovbe hailed Plymouth University, saying “We are aware of many good and strong faculties in your University and would want Westminster College Lagos to form a good working relationship with Plymouth University. It will be wonderful if Plymouth University could be part of Westminster College Lagos’ success in the organisation of Foundation Programme, which was started in 2005.
“Our request is for students, who successfully completed our One Year University Foundation Programme, to be automatically admitted into the three year degree courses in Plymouth University to read Engineering, Law, Business Administration, Economics, Accounting and other courses.
On the progress of Students of the College, Chief Barovbe explained that “every year many Westminster College Lagos, students in the University Foundation Programme, leave Nigeria to study in the UK, Canada, US and Hungary universities for Law, Engineering, Medicine, Architecture, Accounting and business Administration.” He further noted that the “college has room for growth and vacant land for expansion.”
Westminster College, located at No. 7-13, Johnson Barovbe Street, off Pab Bus stop, Ikotun-Idimu Road, was founded in the Year 2000 by Chief Johnson Barovbe, who is a 1978 MBA graduate from the University of Bradford, West Yorkshire; and his wife, Barrister Margaret Barovbe, a law graduate from the University of Lagos, Nigeria, Fellow of West African College of Nursing (FWACN) and holder of B.Sc degree in Nursing from the University of Bedfordshire.
*Chief Johnson Barovbe, JP, Managing Director, Westminster College, Lagos (right) in handshake with Mr. Stuart Rennie of Plymouth University, UK during the visit of represetatives of Plymouth University to Westminster College. Besides them is Mrs. Helen Ayisire, College’s Principal.