The Centre of Excellence in Reproductive Health Innovation (CERHI) hosted by the University of Benin(Uniben) with funds from the World Bank under the Africa Centres of Excellence Project formally inaugurated its new Secretariat. The event took place at the Akin Deko Main Auditorium, University of Benin.

In attendance were Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academics) of  Uniben, Former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ibadan Prof. Olufemi Adebisi Bamir, Prof. Pius Iribhogbe, the Registrar, Mrs. O.A. Oshodin, other members of the University’s management as well as teaching and non teaching staff of the institution including students.

The Centre leader, Prof. Friday Okonofua in his opening remarks acknowledged the s support of the World Bank and the host institution. He stated that, CERHIs mission is to build capacity within West Africa’s tertiary educational system for implementing high quality training and applied research for reproductive health professions to tackle policies and programs for reducing the region’s high burden of fertility, unsafe abortion, maternal mortality and HIV/AIDS.

Prof. Okonofua also highlighted some achievements of CERHI, including its partnerships (National, Regional and International), ultramodern well equipped Laboratory and Library, Business Centre, the Centre’s well-furnished International Students Hostel with 24 hours high speed internet access and other facilities of the Centre. He encouraged all students and Staff of the University to visit the facility often.

In his keynote address, Prof. Olufemi commended CERHI saying, “I am happy to note that the first set of students have graduated from the program, while the University can boast of high quality and excellent teaching and research facilities leading, according to the University, to the present formal inauguration of the program for the eternal benefit and use of all Nigerians”. He also noted that the central role of a University is education and Uniben is delivering on its core mandate.

The Secretariat is to be the administrative and research wing of the Centre.