The Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy (NAPharm), on Thursday bestowed Honorary Fellowship Award on the Proprietor, Afe Babalola University, Aare Afe Babalola (SAN), for his contribution towards the advancement of Pharmacy education in Nigeria.
Afe Babalola University is the first university in Nigeria that established College of Pharmacy with Prof. Mbang Femi-Oyewo, as its provost. The honorary award was conferred on the legal luminary at the academy’s investiture programme held in Lagos on Thursday. Aare Babalola therefore became the second recipient of the academy’s honorary award after the former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon received it in 2015.
While justifying the conferment of the award on Aare Babalola, the Napharm President, Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi said “I will like to specially congratulate Aare Afe babalola, who is not only a Senior Advocate of Nigeria but also the proprietor of the high- flying Afe Babalola University.
“Anyone who has been to the College of Pharmacy of that University will appreciate why the Aare has been unanimously chosen by this academy as the second ever honorary recipient of a fellowship of the Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy after General Yakubu Gowon. In one word, that College of Pharmacy is world-class. We have no doubt that its products will be no less”,
Also at the investiture programme, NAPharm inducted 20 new fellows into its fold. The new fellows are Pharm. Olugbenga Olubowale; Pharm. (Mrs) Joke Bakare; Pharm. Olakunle Oyelana; Pharm. Olayinka Subair; Pharm. Christopher Ehimen; Pharm. Babashehu Ahmed; Pharm. (Mrs) Christiana Akpa; Pharm. (Mrs) Olubunmi Aribeana; Pharm. Adekunle Tometi and Pharm. (Sen.) Sadiq Umar.
Others are Pharm. (Hon.) Gboluga Ikengboju; Pharm. (Prof.) Ray Ozolua; Pharm. (Mrs) Talatu Ebune; Pharm. (Mrs) Abiola Paul-Ozieh; Pharm. (Sir) Valentine Ezeiru; Pharm. (Dr) Kingsley Amibor; Pharm. (Prof.) Gbenga Alebiowu; Pharm. (Prof.) Ene Ette; Pharm. (Dr) Daniel Orunmwense and Pharm. (Mrs) Abolade Sotubo.
While presenting the new fellows to the president of the academy, the Chairman, Membership Committee, Pharm. Paul Enebeli, explained that the new fellows went through rigorous screening. According to him, there were about 63 nominees from different interest groups in the industry.
“After the committee has received 63 nominees, we put criterial in place and the committee screened all the nominees based on the criteria and at the end of the screening, 20 were selected out of the 63”, the chairman said.
Prince Adelusi-Adeluyi charged the new fellows to start bringing in their unique contributions to enable the academy achieve its objectives.
While examining the development in the pharma world, Prince Adelusi-Adeluyi stated that COVID-19 pandemic has taught Nigeria a big lesson, which is the imperative of medicines security, particularly as it relates to local drug manufacturing, saying Nigeria, as a nation, needs to be committed to production of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) rather than relying on importation of the materials.
He also charged pharmacists, pharmaceutical scientists and medical professionals in the field of research in Nigeria to tap into the world of big data, artificial intelligence and machine learning, saying the three areas are the drivers of what many analysts have referred to as the fourth industrial revolution.
In his remarks, the President, Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, (PSN), Prof. Cyril Usifoh, expressed satisfaction that pharmacists are beginning to move from stage of complaining to taking possession of what belongs to them.
“One of the slogans during my campaign was that pharmacists must be made relevant in the sphere of activities, especially in the political arena. When we are relevant in the society, we can make impact and when we make impact, people will know who pharmacists are and when they know whom pharmacists are, it will increase your economic base and make things better for you whether in academia or any area you find yourself”, he said.
Usifoh commended the NAPharm president for the role the academy is playing to take the Pharmacy profession to greater height, while promising that PSN will continue to work with the academy for the good of the profession.
In his remarks, the Registrar, Pharmacy Council of Nigeria (PCN), Pharm. Babashehu Ahmed, commended the academy for the good works it’s doing for the profession. He promised that the council will openly and wholeheartedly work with Napharm to ensure that pharmacy regulation gets to the highest level in the country.
While speaking on behalf of other new fellows, Senator Sodiq Umar, said he’s aware that their induction into the academy as Fellows is a responsibility and they will truly rise up to the responsibility, not just for the academy but to the Pharmacy profession. He urged the academy to continue to reposition pharmacy practice in the country.