The phenomenal strides and breakthrough of the Acting Rector of the Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN ), Oron, Akwa Ibom State, Mr. Mkpandiok Ante Mkpandiok continue to attract increased attention from members of the public as Journalists in Akwa Ibom State recently went on facility tour of the Academy and at the end showered the Rector with commendations on account of his record of achievements. It is noteworthy that the facility tour has come just a few days after the House of Representatives, through the House Committee on Maritime Safety, Education and Administration, had also visited the Institution to see things for themselves following a retreat in Uyo, and had left with strong commendations for the Rector whose leadership style and pragmatism they unanimously extolled.
The selected journalists were led to the event by a seasoned Journalist and Media Consultant to the Academy, Elder Edet Okpo, who also conducted them around the facilities in the Academy. Places inspected by the Journalists included a-300 capacity e-library and resource centre near completion, twin-storey classroom blocks that are near completion, 10 new staff quarters, a boatyard and Parade Pavilion for cadets under construction.
Other places visited were a renovated main academic block, administrative block, a-reactivated 100 capacity auditorium, a-200 capacity Male Hostel block under construction, a completed Campus Warehouse, three completed classroom blocks as well as a Full Mission Bridge, 360 Degrees and Liquid Cargo Handling Simulators which were recently completed and now in full use for practical experience by the cadets.
It was observed that most of these structures which were abandoned for years by different administrations of the Academy were either reactivated or speedily completed in less than one year sof Mr. Mkpandiok Ante Mkpandiok’s tenure as the Acting Rector of MAN, Oron.
Interestingly, the master’s touch approach to issues and self-evident achievements of Mr. Mkpandiok Ante Mkpandiok the Acting Rector, who also doubles as the substantive Registrar of the Academy, are not limited to the physical development of the premier maritime institution in Nigeria. Hence the complimentary achievements of Mr. Mkpandiok Mkpandiok’s brief tenure include creation of functional and pragmatic mechanism for regular staff training and development programme, initiating and creating robust diplomacy and public relations template among critical sectors of the Academy’s host communities, review of the Academy’s curriculum to tally fully with the expectations of the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) and holding of capacity-building workshops and seminars for those in more strategic and high-professionalized fields related to the Academy.
It is also on record that it is in Mkpandiok Mkpandiok’s administration that HND programme in Electronic\Electrical Engineering has been reintroduced for cadets of Naval Architecture, Marine Meteorology and Oceanography, even as he has also reinforced the culture of sound morals and learning in the institution. To further boost the morale and productivity of staff of the Academy, 378 staff were recently promoted, an exercise that had eluded the institution for years.
In his comments after the facility tour, the State Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Akwa Ibom State Council, Elder Patrick Albert, represented by Secretary of NUJ, Comrade Amos Etuk, said what he saw was a testimony of excellence for Mr, Mkpandiok Mkpandiok whom he described as a rounded administrator with strong vision for the Academy and consummate passion for his job as Acting Rector. “What we have seen today could not have come from an outsider or a man who does not know his onions. It is obvious that the many active years Mkpandiok Mkpandiok has served in critical positions in the Academy have afforded him the opportunity to know exactly what the Academy needs and the most practical ways to actualizing them. That he could effect these changes in a short while is a pointer to greater things in the future if he is encouraged in all ramifications to sustain the tempo. The Nigeria Union of Journalists NUJ) as a union is greatly impressed”, Albert declared.
Also speaking, the Director, Corporate Affairs/Public Relations of MAN, Oron, Mr. Siddi Mkpandiok, stated that what Mr, Mkpandiok Mkpandiok has brought to bear is really not a surprise but a revelation of what could happen when a round peg is put in a round hole. He said nobody in the Academic Community was surprised by recent developments in the Academy courtesy of the Acting Rector’s intellectual and leadership acumen. Mr. Siddi remarked that the Academy is now on a new plane of existence and that more is in the offing. “Considering his pedigree and commitments to the Academy, Mkpandiok Mkpandiok’s record is a proof of his full knowledge of the Academy, his tested capabilities, personal vision and focus and genuine concern to ensuring that the institution becomes an enviable global competitor in line with the Federal Government’s renewed objectives, dreams and investments on the Academy. From the staff to the cadets and the host communities, there can be no question that everyone now feels at home and looks forward to better days with Mkpandiok Ante Mkpandiok at the helm of affairs. He has made things we hitherto thought were impossible, possible. He is a thoroughbred administrator”.