Dr Oshiotse Andrew Okwilagwe: Celebrating An Astute Scholar At 65
 By Alaba Abdulrazak
 In the field of impartation of knowledge, some teachers have become a
 class by themselves. They play significant roles in educating their
 students, sharpening their intellect and moulding their characters.
 Such teachers live on in the memories of their students — some as
 strict disciplinarians, some as scholars, some for their meticulous
 teaching skills, a few for their loving care, and fewer still for all
 these and more. But teachers like Oshiotse Andrew Okwilagwe; whose
 influence transcends the boundaries of four walls of citadel of
 learning is an embodiment of all the good attributes that make a good
 Since two weeks ago when the social media was awash with
 congratulatory messages on this erudite scholar; I have been trying to
 get across to this thorough-bred scholar and professional for an
 interview to no avail. I later learnt that his PhD students were being
 examined at various seminars. This prompted me to further dig into who
 Oshiotse Andrew Okwilagwe is! In the course of my investigation, I
 found his website-oshiotseandrewokwilagwe.com, which became my source
 of information on this humble scholar.
 Born in Jattu-Uzairue area of Edo State, 65 years ago, Oshiotse Andrew
 Okwilagwe is today an Associate Professor in the Department of
 Library, Archival and Information Studies (LARIS), University of
 Ibadan. As a scholar and a writer of commendable literary depth, he
 holds degrees which are uniquely relevant to information resources
 manufacturing, processing, use of mass media and communication. His
 website indicates over 70 scholarly publications in high profile
 journals both home and abroad.
 Highly commendable scholarship for a man who holds B.A., M.A. in
 Communication and Language Arts, MLS in Library, Archival and
 Information Studies, M.Litt and PhD in Publishing and Copyright
 Studies. Today, Okwilagwe represents a rare intellectual bridge that
 runs across the major information communication disciplines. Having
 studied at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria and University of
 Stirling, Scotland, Okwilagwe enrolled and completed course work on
 the MA degree programme in Africa Studies, University of Ibadan.
 Okwilagwe is an academic and as well as a professional publisher
 involved in teaching, research, consultancy and practical scholarly
 publishing. His researches include Library and Information Studies,
 Bibliotherapy, Social and Community Informatics, Publishing and
 Copyright Studies.
 Along his career path, he served as Sub-Dean (Undergraduate) in the
 Faculty of Education, University of Ibadan between 1995/96–1996/97.
 He was a member of some important committees such as Senate Curriculum
 Committee for six years, University of Ibadan Business School
 Establishment Committee, University of Ibadan Vision and Mission
 Committee on Curricula Development and also served on other Faculty of
 Education curriculum and other various committees. He was Head of the
 Department of LARIS from 2011–2013. It is on record that he sourced
 and prudently saved over 11million Naira for the department. He was a
 member of the Governing Council of Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma,
 Edo State, Nigeria. He is a resource person to Nigeria Copyright
 Commission, Nigeria Publishers Association and Library Association,
 Oyo State chapter.
 Dr Okwilagwe is a strong advocate of autonomous sustainable publishing
 capacity in Africa. He is the founder and president of Nigeria
 Association of Researchers and Teacher of Publishing (NARTOP) which is
 the Nigerian Chapter of West African Association of Researchers and
 Teachers of Publishing (WARTOP) and African Association of Researchers
 and Teachers of Publishing (AARTOP).
 Dr Okwilagwe is also the Director of Stirling-Horden Publishers Ltd
 which is the publishing arm of NARTOP. NARTOP has in collaboration
 with Stirling-Horden Publishers Ltd published over 400 scholarly
 titles on not-for-profit basis, under the NARTOP/Stirling-Horden
 Scholarly Publishing Action Programme (NARTOP/S.H- SPAP). Dr Okwilagwe
 has worked with over 450 authors on various publishing projects in
 Dr Okwilagwe has trained many scholars through workshops held under
 the auspices of NARTOP on the Nigerian Scholarly Authors Empowerment
 Programme (NSAEP). NSAEP which is aimed at creating a crop of
 small-scale scholarly publishers who are highly educated and with the
 right brief for scholarly publishing in Nigeria. As one of the most
 noted of his contemporaries, Okwilagwe developed the pedagogical
 concept, designed the programme contents that led to the establishment
 of a full-fledged, highly structured and unique academic and
 professional Modula Master degree and a complimentary PhD degree
 programme in Publishing and Copyright Studies (MPCS) in the
 The Master Degree in Publishing and Copyright Studies (MPCS) is highly
 subscribed and has produced top-flight publishers who are now holding
 executive positions in the publishing industry in Nigeria. He has
 authored 4 books and edited a 4 Volume Encyclopaedia entitled
 Nigeriana Stirling-Horden Encyclopaedia of Mass Media and
 Communication and two books on Mass Media and Communication. He has
 supervised over 70 master degree dissertations and 6 PhD Theses.
 Dr Okwilagwe’s researches focus on the influence of Publishing, and
 Library and Information Science on national development. That is why
 he focused his research on the methods and processes of using the
 services of the information professionals in bringing about rapid and
 sustainable development in Nigeria. In this regard, his research
 effort has honed new perspectives on the synergy between Library,
 Archival and Information Science and allied disciplines of publishing,
 copyright, bibliotherapy and national development. These perspectives
 indicate the processes of applying the services of information
 professionals towards building information systems that can
 effectively meet users’ needs. Thus, his research thematically and
 theoretically spans Library, Archival and Information Science,
 Publishing, Copyright, Bibliotherapy Information Resources Management
 and Social Librarianship. This scholar of note has also supervised
 over 120 first and master degrees projects and 10 PhD theses.
 Even with this kind of intimidating credentials and catalogue of
 educational achievements that involve meticulous teaching skills, tons
 of research and so on; it came as a shock to me that this erudite
 scholar has not been elevated to professor.
 Although I’m a journalist who does not work in the academic
 environment; I’m not naive to the criteria used to bestow
 professorship on academics. I’m aware that a professorship is the
 highest ranking position for a university academic, and people don’t
 get it unless they actually teach, research and render services on a
 full-time basis.
 Dr Oshiotse Andrew Okwilagwe according to my investigation and
 information at my disposal is never short of any of the fundamental
 criteria for bestowing professorship on him by the University of
 Ibadan. Perhaps the promotion criteria in this university must be
 extraordinarily stringent or are there other considerations?
 If for the past fourteen years, this cerebral scholar has been an
 Associate Professor without promotion then something is wrong
 somewhere. The authorities of this great institution must do something
 urgent to address this anomaly. This kind of incongruity if not
 urgently addressed is capable of hindering hardwork, creativity and
 expertise in education field in Nigeria.
 Dr Oshiotse Andrew Okwilagwe at 65 is no doubt an achiever. He is an
 astute scholar who has continued to put premium candour in educational
 and professional discourse in Nigeria and Africa in general. He
 possesses a rare quality that is very hard to find among scholars in
 At 65, Dr Okwilagwe has no doubt carved a lasting legacy in the field
 of education in Nigeria. As you look back on yesterday, may your
 memories be warm ones. And as you celebrate today, may your heart be
 filled with happiness and joy. And as you look ahead to tomorrow, may
 your deepest hopes and dreams come true for you.

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