Meet 7 Ogbomoso.indigenes who served/serving as Vice Chancellors in Nigerian universities

Meet 7 Ogbomoso.indigenes who served/serving as Vice Chancellors in Nigerian universities


Ogbomoso in Oyo state, Nigeria, is a fountain of intellectual giants and academics, whose contributions to national development especially in the area of education at the highest level is remarkable.

The 423 year-old city is reputed (though arguably) to have produced the first Professor in Africa in Professor N.D. Oyerinde of Igbagbo compound, Isale-Afon.

What is not contestable however is that today hundreds of academics of professorship cadre have been produced by the city.

In this piece seven who have risen to the prestigious position of Vice Chancellors of universities are pinpointed with focus on their performance.


1. Professor Emmanuel Ayankanmi Ayandele

Professor Ayandele who died in June 2014 at the age of 79 was founding Principal of the Jos Campus of the University of Ibadan (forerunner of University of Jos) from 1972 to 1975. He had worked previously at the University of Ibadan.

The Professor of History’s sterling performance in Jos earned him appointment likewise as pioneer Vice Chancellor of the University of Calabar, which he built from scratch. He was here between 1975 and 1982.



2. Professor Timothy Oyebode Olagbemiro

Professor Timothy Olagbemiro of the illustrious Chief David Oyediran Olagbemiro family of Ogbomoso, served as Vice Chancellor of two different universities non-stop for a whopping 20 years (2003 to 2023)! That is incredible!

The Professor of Chemistry after working at the Bayero University Kano and Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University Bauchi, was appointed Vice Chancellor of Bowen University, Iwo, in 2003. He exceedingly and innovatively built the institution to a world class one. Among his touches was building the largest University Chapel in the world. He also put in place many other infrastructures such as the library complex which is today named after him. Indeed, it’s on record he built over 40 structures within 10 years. He was really the pioneer VC as Prof Okedara who served before him spent just few months before he took over the pioneering role. He no doubt set a mammoth pace. He also introduced many academic programmes that got accredited.

The world class chapel he built, one of those that enhances the aesthetic of the institution
University library at Bowen University, Iwo, christened, “Timothy Olagbemiro Library” by Bowen’s Governing Council in 2013.

After he completed his tenure of two terms in 2013, he received a call while resting in the USA from Chief Edwin Clark, proprietor of Edwin Clark University, Kaigbodo, Delta state, to be founding Vice Chancellor of the university. He obliged and would serve another two terms (2013 to 2023). He equally left remarkable achievements.



3. Professor Matthews Akintunde Ojo

Prof Ojo was the third Vice Chancellor of Bowen University, Iwo, succeeding Prof Olagbemiro.. A Professor of Religious Studies he started his teaching career as Assistant Lecturer at Obafemi Awolowo University (then University of Ife) in 1982.

His appointment as Vice Chancellor of Bowen University in 2013 marked the beginning of a new vista for the University.

New Bowen Gate built during his tenure with adjoining 7foot perimeter fence covering length and breadth of the land of Bowen University

He extensively embarked on infrastructural upgrade, aestheticised the university’s physical environment, and instituted a culture of environmental management, rehabilitated many physical structures and upgraded facilities, built an academic culture that develops personnel and also widens the opportunities for regenerative growrh, added more courses, which were accredited by the NUC, including the Law Faculty and Medicine, gave opportunities for innovative research for sustainable development, such as starting the Centre for Biomedical and Drug Research, creating a Centre for Gender Studies from a study group, held national conferences, and was able to bring scholarly minds from different institutions for national conferences. Also, he focused on students welfare and development, prioritised staff welfare and development, providing resources and opportunities for staff members who wanted to improve on their learning and those who wished to carry out research, and improved the frosty relationship between Iwo community and the university.



4. Professor Emmanuel Adegoke Adegbite. 

Adegbite, a Professor of Plant Genetics/Cytogenetics, born in Olukumopa compound, Taraa, Ogbomoso, was the Vice Chancellor (Acting) of Ondo State University of Science and Technology, OSUSTECH, Okitipupa (now Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology, OAUSTECH) between 2015 and 2017.

His career trajectory included stints at International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, IITA between 1990 and 1998, LAUTECH and Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB).

He was on the staff of OAUSTECH when he was drafted as Acting VC. He played a big role in moving the university forward within the short time he served.



5. Professor Jeremiah Oludele Ojediran

Jeremiah Ojediran, a Professor of Agricultural Engineering in the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, where he once served as Deputy Vice Chancellor (DVC), is the Vice Chancellor of the Bells University of Technology, Ota, in Ogun state (owned by former President Olusegun Obasanjo). He assumed the role in 2016.

He previously taught at the Polytechnic of Sokoto state (now Waziri Umaru Polytechnic) and at LAUTECH, where he got appointed as DVC (2008 to 2010). His tenure as Bells University’s VC has been tremendous in terms of legacies; among others, he instituted impartation of requisite skills to students such as ICT, developed virtual library that enables students to access it on their systems, inculcated entrepreneurship knowledge and encouraged research.



6. Professor Joshua Olalekan Ogunwole

A Professor of Soil Physics, Ogunwole, got appointed as fourth substantive Vice Chancellor of Bowen University, Iwo, on August 1, 2018 after the tenure of Prof Ojo wound up. Until his appointment he taught in the Department of Soil Science and Land Resources Management, Federal University, Oye-Ekiti. Also, he was a teacher at the Federal University, FUDMA, Dutsin-Ma, Katsina state, in the Department of Crop Production and Protection.

Prof Ogunwole’s tenure as Bowen VC is also synonymous with enduring legacies.

The Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (Super DARN), which he caused to be built is the only equatorial-low latitude Super DARN in the world today. It’s a collaborative effort with Virginia Tech, USA and the Nigerian government (through its centre for Atmospheric Research). It’s the 36th Super DARN in the world and the first and only one in Africa. Among others the Bowen Equatorial Aeronomy Radar will enhance space weather research and understanding of the equatorial ionosphere and will help with communication (telephony), surveying and oil exploration, navigation (aircraft piloting, ship navigation), equipment designs, geomapping and study of atmospheric currents, weather forecasts and other weather dynamics, thus helping in agriculture etc.

Prof Ogunwole with former Vice President Prof Yemi Osinbajo during the commissioning of Super DARN he built in Bowen University

Prof Ogunwole also improved electricity supply now attaining near-24 hour supply by installing and connecting a 33kva power station to the national grid.

In addition, he developed a paddocking and milk collection centre, which boasts 33 high milk producing breeds that are usually artificially inseminated (witl semen from equally high producing males). The centre which receives raw milk from cattle farmers from outside sells to its partner, Friesland Campinas.

He as well introduced Politics and Law degree programme in the university, the first of such anywhere in Nigeria.

All this is aside massive investment in infrastructures.

Rom Kalilu

7. Professor Rasaq Rom Kalilu

A Professor of Art and Art History, Rom Kalilu, of Bayin compound, Ijeru, Ogbomoso, was appointed Acting Vice Chancellor LAUTECH by the Governing Council of the institution on June 9, 2023. By which he becomes the first Ogbomoso indigene to occupy the position in the 33 year-old university.

He joined the service of the institution in 1992 and once served as DVC. Previously, he worked in advertising design sector, taught at primary and secondary school level, The Polytechnic Ibadan and at the then St. Andrew’s College of Education (now Emmanuel Alayande University of Education), Oyo.

He has made his mark in the academic world and is expected to bring his wealth of experience to bear in his new tasking assignment and importantly, take the university to new heights.








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