The Management of Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) Ile Ife, has revealed that it plans to build an airport within the premises of the institution.
The Vice-Chancellor of the university, Prof Eyitope Ogunbodede, stated this at the 2019 Faculty of Technology International Conference, held at OAU ICT Park recently.
He said the airport would serve as training ground for the planned aeronautic programme of the university.
His words: “We believe that the future of travel globally is in the air. It is in view of this that we are starting an aeronautic programme. As part of this, we will be having our own airport.
“We have over 11,000 hectares of land with which we hope to achieve our objective and we have developed a proposal for the airport. We will be taking it up with the authorities to ensure that we do not only have the aeronautic programme here, but also build an airport that will serve that purpose.
“We want to make OAU the hub of aeronautic studies in Nigeria. Currently, no federal university in the country offers a programme in aeronautic studies. We believe that with OAU taking up this challenge, we can go places with it.
“This idea was contemplated some years ago. Now we are very serious with it. We have the drawings in place and the land has been earmarked. Everything that we need for the airport and to start the programme is ready.”
In a keynote address titled ‘Diversification of Developing Economies: Imperatives for Sustainable Environment and Technological Innovations,’ Prof Oluwatoyin Ashiru said there is abundance of ideas in Nigeria but the framework to transform the ideas into reality is lacking.
While noting that the ideas being abandoned in the country are thriving in other countries of the world, Ashiru said the difference between Nigeria and other countries is the level of commitment and dedication to its development.
According to him, irrespective of the challenges facing the country, the country must embark on technological innovation and sustained support for research and development.