A university don, Toyin Falola, cautioned Nigerians on Friday not to jettison the cultural values of the country to modernity.
Falola, who is a professor of History at the Department of History, University of Texas, Austin, United States of America who stated this at the 37th and 38th University of Ilorin convocation lecture noted that Nigeria is a country blessed with rich historical heritage and a diverse cultural legacy hence shifting to modernisation will inflict challenges in future.
The convocation lecturer discussed on the topic ‘Modernity, Modernisation and Values’ he said that “transformation from a conventional to a contemporary society can be perceived as a dynamic and intricate fabric of ceaseless transformations and adjustments.”
According to him, “We are in digital revolution, artificial intelligence, there is nothing bad in taping or copying other countries to better our own but we have to rethink on how the system works to empower us not to destroy our values.
“We are breaking away from our culture. We should not throw away our traditional values, because if we do, there is going to be challenges.
“Anytime you shift to modernity, turn them to values that work for you. Be careful in copying, be careful in what you imitate from others and if you will copy, edit what you take and use it to enrich your culture, religion and the rest. While generating knowledge we should not throw away our values.
“Within the intricate and ever-evolving narrative, Nigeria emerges a symbol, illuminating the overarching patterns permeating the African continent. When compared to more advanced region like Europe and North America, the process of modernisation in Nigeria is still in its early stages.
Read also: No fee raise, says Kwara State University VC
“It implores collective awareness of the Nigerian population to cultivate approaches that are both inventive and rooted in the principles that delineate the nation’s character, constructing a forthcoming era that is adaptable to evolving circumstances while firmly rooted in the fundamental tenet that have steered the society across epoch.”
Wahab Olasupo Egbewole, professor of international Law and Vice Chancellor University of Ilorin, said the lecture is timely and significant in our evolving world, as we are in an era marked by rapid technological advancements with the emboldening and intimidating presence of artificial intelligence and shifting cultural landscape.
The Vice Chancellor had while commending the lecturer, said: “I sincerely appreciate how you highlighted the importance of values in the face of rapid modernisation, your emphasis on the need to preserve our core ethical and moral principles while adapting to the changing world resonated with me on a personal note and to us as an institution.”
He however, presented the summary of the successful students graduating from the University in 2020/2021 academic session.
“A total of 14,477 students will be convoking for the 37th Convocation Ceremonies. In the First Degree/Diploma category, we have 211 First Class, 4,143 Second Class (Upper Division), 6,570 Second Class (Lower Division), 1,742 Third Class and 30 Pass. The 37th Convocation Ceremonies also include 151 MBBS graduands, 73 Nursing graduands, 18 Optometry graduands, 43 Veterinary Medicine graduands, and 12 graduands with Distinction and 27 graduands with Pass in Pharmacy. In summary, the University will be graduating 13,020 for First Degrees/Diplomas.
“Furthermore, the total number of Higher Degrees to be awarded at the 37th Convocation Ceremonies is 1,457. Out of this figure, there are 75 Postgraduate Diplomas, 976 Masters from various Faculties, 88 Professional Masters’s Degrees, and 318 PhDs,” the VC explained.