ABUAD graduate emerges Law School overall best

As private varsity proves a point

By Dayo Adesulu

Naomi Ekop 21, has again debunked the general aspersion cast on undergraduates of private institutions that they are not a match to their counterparts in the public universities.

Ekop, who graduated with a first class at the Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti, repeated the same feat at the Law School, as she emerged the overall best graduating law student of 2018 set.

At the Law School, she was adjudged the best in Civil Litigation, overall best female lawyer and overall best student at the Law School.

Naomi Ekop

By this exceptional academic performance outside the shores of Afe Babalola University,  she didn’t only confirms the worth of some private universities in Nigeria, she also asserted that many graduates from private universities are academically more sound than their counterparts in Federal Universities.

Afe Babalola suggests unified exams for final year students

Besides, it will not be out of place to state that her quality performance at the law school has further vindicated first class graduates in private universities.

It is a popular statement among many undergraduates, graduates and lectures in public universities that first class in private universities is like sachet of pure water which any person could easily purchased.

You will therefore agree that for Ekop to had graduated with a first at ABUAD and repeated the same at the Law School as overall best, shows she really worked for it and also indicated that her lecturers and University are good. This reminds us of Esther Azom, who maintained distinctions in all her courses from 100 Level to 500 Level at ABUAD in 2018 and subsequently obtained distinctions in Surgery, Medicine and Community Medicine in the final MBBS examinations.

By the way,what is happening to our public universities today, why are first class graduates scarce among them? Is it the problem of the students or problem of the professors who are stingy to award mark even when the students merit it. Or are they afraid that their students might not be able to defend it at the labour market?

Well, Ekop has been able to defend her first class grade at the Law School among other law graduates from all public and private universities in Nigeria.

Ekop who had scored little above 200 during her UTME in 2012, gained admission the same year at ABUAD and eventually topped her peers who had close to 300 in JAMB. She further proved a point that your JAMB score for admission is not directly proportional to your academic performance in the university.

Ekop who hail from Etim Ekpo Local Government Area in Akwa Ibom State was born 21 years ago by Mr and Mrs Uwem Charles Ekop who are both Barristers at Law.

Speaking with Vanguard after the founder and Pro-Chancellor of ABUAD, Chief Aare Afe Babalola gave her N500,000 for performance, she said: ‘’it’s just God’s grace and then hardwork.”

She said though people say it’s really tough in the Law School, adding that if only students knew themselves and developed a strategy, by the time they get to Law school, it would be easy to make excellence. “Plan your reading time, know what works for you and then work with your curriculum,” she advised.

According to her, by the time you start reading consistently front the first day in school, when it’s time for examinations you wouldn’t be scaredsa, adding, “ You would be able to face the examinations and come out well.”

She said: “I got the best in Civil Litigation, was third best in Criminal Litigation, overall best female student and also the overall best student at the Law School. “At ABUAD, I was on a first class from 100 Level to 500 Level, so I had to consistently maintain that because there is no other way. Once you start, you just have to keep maintaining that till your final levels for you to graduate with a first class.

“So I just had to plan that each year, each exams, I just have to be better, I had to do more than the previous one, just to sustain the level.”

Asked her future plans, she said: “Currently, I am serving as a corps member in Bayelsa state, after which I hope to further my studies and then probably join the academics.”