olu obafemiProfessor Olu Obafemi of the Department of Theatre and Performing Arts, University of Ilorin, Kwara State and former Director of Research, National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), Kuru-Jos, has emerged, unopposed, as the new President of the Nigerian Academy of Letters (NAL), at the end of the 18th Convocation of the Academy held Thursday, 11th August, 2016, to form a new executive committee.

The President of the Society of Nigeria Theatre Artists (SONTA) and Head, Department of Theatre Arts, University of Maiduguri, Borno State, Professor Sunday Enessi Ododo, was also elected as one of the four Non-Official Members of the Executive Committee of NAL.

A press release by Professor Ododo stated that, earlier on, Professor Duro Oni (Deputy Vice Chancellor, Management Services, University of Lagos) and Professor Sam Ukala (Delta State University, Abraka) were admitted into the College of Fellows of NAL, and requested SONTA members to join him to rejoice with all the worthy Fellows of SONTA for the remarkable achievements.

Reacting to the development, Executive Secretary/CEO, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) and Visiting Associate Professor to Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSU), Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, said Professors Olu Obafemi has been a leading light in SONTA, and that he was not surprised that he has emerged the President of NAL.

While congratulating the new NAL President as well as Professors Duro Oni, Sam Ukala and Sunday Ododo, in their new capacities in NAL, Prof. Ayakoroma said the cheering development was an impetus for younger academics to work towards achieving such glorious heights, saying he has implicit confidence in the distinguished theatre professors.

On his part, the Director (Programmes), Centre for Cyberspace Studies, Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK), and immediate past President of SONTA, Professor Emmanuel S. Dandaura, received the cheering news thus: “I celebrate the sterling achievements of our elder and honorary Chairman of the Nigerian section of the International Association of Theatre Critics, Professor Olu Obafemi, for ascending the Presidency of NAL. I am also glad that pursuant to his long established reputation of effective mentoring he has prepared our SONTA President for election as ex-officio member of his new Exco”, he said.

Continuing, Dandaura said: “To the new NAL Fellows, Professors Duro Oni and Sam Ukala, I gladly join the teeming SONTA members to congratulate you for making us proud again. It is indeed a SONTA year! Even at that, I am convinced this is only but a continuation of the bountiful harvest! We look forward to much more as the months add on”.

(c) NICO News