Professor Mrs. Roseline O. Aziza is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Administration, Delta State University, Abraka.
Oasis Magazine team had an exclusive chat with Professor Aziza in her office few days before her tenure ended.
She spoke about the journey so far, her achievements and what she intends to do after she hands over.
As the outgoing Deputy Vice Chancellor (DVC), Administration of this great institution, how has the journey been?
The truth of the matter is that it has been awesome. It has exposed me to experiences I ordinarily would not have thought possible- ranging from human beings, adult, staffs, and children. It is only now that I know that, there are a lot of things that people may not understand because they are not in the position to understand. So, it has been awesome. It has been well worth it.
During your tenure, what achievements or successes were recorded?
Well… you see, as the DVC Administration, one of the major duties was to ensure that I supported the Vice-Chancellor to achieve the goal of moving the university forward and I can say with all sense of modesty that I tried to do as much as I could. There may have been one or two issues I did not quite agree with but he is also a very open-minded person. So, when issues arose, and you know there were differences but he was always willing to listen to a different opinion and if the opinion is superior, he would not hesitate to agree with it. So, that is part of the reasons I really enjoyed working with him. It was not a personal achievement rather it was a collective achievement.
Ma, despite the achievement and success recorded, there must have been challenges. Would you like to talk about a few of them?
One of the major challenges is that sometimes there is this sense of disbelief, particularly from staff. This is a system and most of us are aware either when we were student or as a lecturer that there are certain things that the system will frown at and would bring the system down but yet we deliberately do them. Maybe hoping that we will not be caught and then by the time we are caught, it will now become a different issue. If a system must run well then we all have to be on the same page. So, that is actually the challenge faced so far. I thought that in a society like ours, we don’t have to police an adult like we police children but there are some adults who want to be policed. One thing that I am happy about is that we were able to maintain the academic atmosphere and the calendar by the grace of God as it was calm most of the time. Those were the challenges I faced. You know, they said when you want to have peace, you must be prepared for war and am happy that I was given the opportunity to contribute in this capacity. Like I said before, it was a very awesome experience.
What are the legacies you are leaving behind?
In my position as the DVC Administration, one of the major things I have to look at for was discipline. It is one legacy people now know I do not allow to be compromised. So, there were several attempts but by the grace of God and with the support of management we were able to pull through. It was more of a collective thing but since am the one directly in charge I am leaving that legacy behind.
What advice do you have for the person taking over from you?
Professor Asagba is an old hand in the system too and he has also been part of management. I am sure that he may not have the challenges that I had. Yes, I was Dean before I came here but he was a Dean and then a Provost. He has managed a campus. So I think he still needs to ensure that he doesn’t allow himself to be compromised because sometimes the situation can be very dicey. He also has to be very prayerful because only God can protect and direct.
Would you want to apply for the VC position?
Well, I have always seen position as God-given. If given the opportunity to apply for the position of the Vice-Chancellor, l will go for it; and by the grace of God if I get it, I will take it. But that is something that I will leave God to decide like he had decided the positions I have attained so far. So, I have come a long way, I have headed several positions in the course of my working years and there is none of them that I have fought for but for now am an academic.
When done with this position, what is next for you?
I use to make researches years back. So the first thing is to go back to my research work and then into what I like to do more. That is my primary constituency- lecturing and carrying out my researches.
Finally, what is your advice to the Abraka community?
I think Abraka community should support the university more. The reasons I am saying this is because, this university is located here and the community have sacrificed by giving the university the land they occupy but the university has also projected the name of the community. So, the community is a major stakeholder and that is why they should go all out to protect it and own it. When you look at Oleh, the lsoko community is involved in the growth and support of the institution- be it financial, physical and otherwise. But I don’t see that happening in not just the Abraka community but the Urhobo land. I don’t see them give the amount of support that is expected of them. There should be a good and cordial relationship between the university and the community. The community has tried but more can still be done.