FUTMINNA MANAGEMENT COMMENDS Africa Centre of Excellence for Mycotoxin and Food Safety (ACEMFS) 

The Management of the Federal University of Technology, Minna, Niger State Nigeria has commended the Africa Centre of Excellence for Mycotoxin and Food Safety (ACEMFS), FUT, Minna for its achievements so far. The Vice-Chancellor of the University, Prof. Abdullahi Bala, gave the commendation recently while receiving a team from ACEMFS led by the Centre Leader, Prof. Hussaini Makun who gave a presentation on the centres activities and achievements. 

The Vice-Chancellor stated that the presence of the Centre, has improved the ranking especially in the area of post graduate programmes as the Centre has international students. Prof. Bala praised the doggedness of ACEMFS highlighting its commitment to work and assured of Management’s continuous support for the project. While commending and congratulating the relentless efforts of ACEMFS, he urged the Centre to do more in the area of short courses and accreditations which will boost its earnings. 

Earlier, Centre Leader, Prof. Hussaini Makun in his presentation on the activities and achievements of the Centre so far expressed appreciation to the University Management for their support at all times and assured of continuous commitment to the project. Prof. Makun disclosed that ACEMFS, FUT, Minna has earned a total sum of $1,668,880 in the last two years, making her the 3rd and 7th performing Africa Centre of Excellence (ACE) in Nigeria and Africa respectively. Other achievements by ACEMFS, he disclosed, include appointment of the Centre Leader as a member of the National Food Safety Advisory Committee, an indication of the centres strong industrial link. 

He added that the Centre has also led a consortium of three ACEs to win the Association of African Universities grant of $100,000 for the establishment of West African Food Safety Network (WAFOSAN), while four of her students are on West Africa Network of infectious Diseases ACE (WANIDA) scholarship and ACEMFS is one of the centres that have fully adopted the online training mode using FUT, Minna based Google classroom and lectures are ongoing with members of International Scientific Advisory Board (ISAB), Sectoral Advisory Board (SAB) and faculties within the University amongst other achievements. 

The Deputy Centre Leader, Dr. Hadiza Muhammad, in her presentation disclosed that a total of 87 students were enrolled in the Centre for the 2019/2020 session, out of which 27 are international students from various African countries and Britain. The African countries include Ghana, Cameroon, Sierra Leone, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Malawi, Kenya, Uganda, Niger Republic and Nigeria. The students, she said, received online lectures and have supervisors from Belgium, Italy, India, South Africa, United States and other partner institutions in Nigeria, mainly University of Abuja and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration Control (NAFDAC) and others. 

On her part, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer and Nanotechnology Research Theme Leader, Dr. Mercy Bankole said that the researchers in the Centre are performing well and their publications have increased the Centre’s earnings. She also revealed that the total earnings so far by the centre is 28% of the first year, effective from 2021. 

Dr. Bankole took the Management team through the indicators known as Disbursement Link Indicators (DLI), which showed how the centres earn from various activities ranging from institutional readiness, development impact of ACE, quality of students, short courses, programme accreditation, internship, teaching and research infrastructure, external revenue, research publications and entrepreneurship.  

At the end of the presentation, the VC, as mandated by the project, appointed the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Prof. Faruk Adamu Kuta as the DLI 7 Officer to work closely with the Centre to execute the institutional impact aspect. DLI 7 is the institutional impact which is controlled by the Vice- Chancellors. 

ACEMFS, FUT, Minna is one of the World Bank funded centres of Excellence, which aims at creating learning opportunities and research results that will address Africa’s shortage of expertise in food safety and applicable solutions to ensure the safe, controlled and sufficient food supply that will support economic growth and public health, particularly in West and Central Africa. 

Centre Leader; ACEMFS, Prof. Hussaini Makun making a presentation to FUT, Minna Principal Officers.

Centre Leader; ACEMFS, Prof. Hussaini Makun making a presentation to FUT, Minna Principal Officers.By: Dorothy Elaigu.