The Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Ibadan (UI) has defeated defending champions, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile Ife, to emerge as winners of the 3rd Annual Sir Ifeanyi Debate Competition.
The keen contest which took place in the new pharmacy complex at Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) on March 4, 2017 was well attended by several pharmacy students.
Debating on three topics – “NHIS: A Worthwhile Endeavour In The Expansion of Access To Quality Health Care?” “Nigeria’s Macroeconomic Policy: A Vital Tool In The Quest For Self-Sustenance in the Mainstream Sector” and “Brain Drain In Developing Country: A Form of Neo-Colonialistic Exploitation or the Inevitable Price of Inadequacy?” the academic gladiators from both institutions metaphorically went for each other’s jugular to garner maximum points through their arguments.
At the end of the debate, the judges – Prof. Adebayo Lamikanra, department of pharmaceutical microbiology; Dr Oluwole Adeyemi, Faculty Students Officer; Dr. (Mrs) Nusrat Omisore, senior lecturer, department of pharmacology and Mr Ayomipo Adegeye, junior trainee Fellow, OAU Faculty of Pharmacy – declared UI as the winner after garnering 213 points as against OAU’s 202.
In other categories, Kazeem Folarin, a 400 level representative of University of Ibadan won the award for ‘Best Chief Speaker’ while Mercy Obadiora, a 100 level candidate of OAU clinched the ‘Best Supporting Speaker’ award.
While explaining the criteria deplored by the judges to decide the winner, Prof. Lamikanra contended that the panelists considered a number of factors which included number of points garnered, manner of presentation, dress code and composure.
“I must confess that I am impressed with the standard of the annual Sir Ifeanyi Atueyi Competition.
“Over the years, I have watched OAU beat up people ruthlessly. Today, you have met your match. Congratulations to UI students for proving that they didn’t travel all the way to play second fiddle to anybody,” he teased.
Interestingly, Ojelabi Jesujoba, who won award for best speaker for the OAU delegation at the last edition, was the co-compere for the event.
Praising the contestants, Prof. Clement Adebajo, dean of the host school, said that they are setting a good precedence for other prospective pharmacy students to follow.
“I also use this special occasion to applaud patron of the initiative, Sir Ifeanyi Atueyi, who continue to ensure the office of the dean doesn’t lack copies of Pharmanews journal to date,” he stressed.
In his address, Pharm (Sir) Ifeanyi Atueyi, managing director of Pharmanews Limited praised the pharmacy students and their mouthpiece – the Pharmaceutical Association of Nigerian Students (PANS) for honouring him with the annual contest.
“It is the greatest honour for me and I must admit that PANS has added a lot into my life,” he noted.
Reacting to a question, Atueyi declared that the journal is strictly for pharmacists, medical professionals and health institutions hence the reason why it cannot be seen in news stands.
“We cannot stop non-professionals who stumble on it from gaining insight into health issues. But they are not the primary target. This is because it contains ethical products or poison as we call it,” he revealed.
Addressing another question on whether one can become rich by starting a pharmacy publication, the Pharmanews boss reassured that there are other things more important than money.
“Since inception of Pharmanews, several publications had come and gone. One thing is certain, if it is not your calling, it will not last. To answer your question, money comes only when you start adding values to your services.
“For instance, Pharmanews generates revenue through subscription, which could be little or minimal and, mainly, through promotion of ethical products in the publication,” he disclosed.
It would be recalled that the Sir Ifeanyi Atueyi Debate & Essay Competition initiative was launched. However a decision was taken at the 2015 edition that the winning school be allowed to host the next contest.
Interestingly, the debate team of the faculty of pharmacy, Obafemi Awolowo University aptly named “The house of Magma” won the 2015 edition. It seemed then that fate had decided to bring the honour HOME for Sir Ifeanyi Atueyi, an Alumnus of the faculty of pharmacy, University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University).
At this year’s edition, University of Ibadan delegation comprised Khadeejah Babalola (300 level), Aliu Raji (300 level), Kazeem Folarin (400 level) and Temiwunmi Akinmuleya while the OAU team was made up of Mercy Obadiora (100 level), Rhoda Bepo (100 level) and Ahmad Akande (100 level).