•   Barrister Olukayode Okenla

Barrister Olukayode Okenla is a well-respected member of the Nigerian community in the United Kingdom. For four years, he served as President of the Ogun State University-Olabisi Onabanjo University, UK Alumni Chapter. 

As he  steps down from this commendable position, he gives an account of his stewardship and the enormous support he received from members of the alumni and the university's governing body.

Below are his submissions:

My Stewardship as President of OSU-OOU ALUMNI UK Chapter


In November of 2019, I was elected President to lead this noble association for a three-year tenure, which was then extended for one more year at the last AGM due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but suffice to say here that it is time to bow out humbly.

The constitution provided  for a second tenure, but I made a conscious decision not to seek another tenure.  I firmly believe that someone else should come on board and take on the opportunity to serve and significantly improve the association. My stand on the ethos is that service to any cause should be selfless, and the key factors that should drive one’s stewardship are Responsiveness, Responsibility and Resourcefulness – these were my three Rs, the premise on which I acted during my term.


Our initial agenda at the inception of our tenure was termed ‘Impact 2020, we had various plans  unfortunately we could not implement them due to the COVID pandemic and  readjust  our  plans. Despite the harsh difficulties, we still achieved many milestones, some listed below here.

• Legacy Project: We were the first chapter to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of our Alumni in January of 2023 and initiated the Legacy project to mark the anniversary, which included the construction of perimeter fence wall for the University, the remodelling of the University Gate and front façade, putting up beautiful signage, construction of the walkway and the lay-by to ease traffic at the entrance of the University. This  project is almost 90% completed - pictures attached.

• Covid: During the Covid pandemic, we established a dedicated team of professionals cutting across various fields and other endeavours for our members. A robust welfare scheme was implemented to cater and support our members, especially the vulnerable ones across the United Kingdom. Monetary assistance and other essentials were provided to aid our vulnerable members. In some  cases, members were signposted for advice, counselling, and general support. Our bereaved members' families  were duly supported during the pandemics and post pandemics periods.  Please let us maintain one minute silence in their honour at this AGM  today.


• Engagement: Several seminars were organised through Zoom meetings, educating and enlightening members on COVID, empowerment, and  improving skills and knowledge of our members.  We tried establishing an insurance scheme to cover our members as part of our social and welfare policy, but we unfortunately did not get through to accomplishing that due to bureaucratic bottlenecks. 

We maintained effective membership engagement, increasing our membership and our STAR birthday greetings for our members is exceptional and fostered close affinity to the Alumni and  also the creation of  regional representatives covering the Midlands, South of England, North of England, Wales, and Ireland. The regional settings   were set up to bring more people into our fold, especially the generations who graduated in recent  years who are now residing in the United Kingdom and Ireland. We maintain  an excellent relationship with the University, National Chapter, and other Chapters through collaboration and partnerships with other  stakeholders to continue promoting and improving our university as a great institution. The erstwhile VC visited and had an audience with  the UK  alumni members and our exco team at various times during our tenure  visited the university at their own expenses interacting with the university to understand the needs. 


Today, I am proud to say that we are leaving behind a well-respected alumni chapter that is highly respected by all and sundry.


We have prudently managed the resources of the alumni, and we  leave behind a healthy balance sheet of £17858.16 and a credit balance of N2, 488, 409. 00 in our Naira account, despite the huge project we embarked on as part of the Back to the University project, which has gulped over  26 million Naira. 


I am confident that the next executive will continue to follow up with our second phase of the legacy project, which was started with the previous Excos under which I served as vice president when we donated some equipment to the University. These include a Microtome Machine, an ECG machine for the Health Centre and the establishment of endowment prizes for overall best students in all departments on a ration basis and assist payment of school fees to vulnerable and less privileged students of the University.


I accept responsibility for any shortcomings during my tenure as the president. 

 I want to thank everyone, especially our alumni members, some of whom have made tremendous sacrifices with payments of dues and  donations to the legacy project and participation in all our programmes and other activities from 2019 till date.


I especially appreciate all members who have served on various committees and who worked selflessly with us from November 2019, including our distinguished BOT members, past executive members,  Constitution Review Committee, Gala Resource Group, Insurance Committee, Electoral Committee, Legacy Project and Finance Committee and other stakeholders within and outside of our Alumni for their support.


I must again acknowledge members of the executive who worked with me. You will recall that at the Legacy Gala event early this year, I acknowledged their contributions with presentation of awards funded by me,  these are great men and women who made tremendous sacrifices  and work tirelessly with me. I salute them all,  Yemisi Oduntan (VP), Bunmi Adedeji (Sec Gen), Tolu Deru (Social Sec), Tayo Kusanu (Welfare Sec), Titi Ayopo (Financial Sec), Jide Ibitoye (Publicity Sec) and the ex-officio members Soji Soda, Sade Demuren, Seyi Obadare and Lara Abdul.


My appreciation is incomplete without mentioning the University Governing Council led by the Pro-Chancellor, who is my blood brother and egbon, in the person of Otunba (Prof)  Oluwatoyin Ashiru, CON and my good brothers,  Vice Chancellor,  Prof Ayodeji Agboola, 

Prof Olufemi Adekoya (DVC Admin) and the Registrar Mr Femi Ogunwomoju, and the President of the National Chapter, Dr Stephen Makinde and our Legacy coordinator in Nigeria Alhaji Idris Aloma.


The support from the Alumni members has been extremely great during our tenure, and I am happy that I have a great successor and a brother who is energetic, hardworking, and committed to the Alumni cause, Tolu Deru. I want to appeal that members should extend to him and his executive much love and support. I firmly believe that he and members of his incoming will do wonders. Kudos to our electoral committee led by Prince Jide Ogunrin and his team members for conducting a superb election to usher in the new executive.


I immensely thank God, my family, and friends for their support throughout my tenure.


Olukayode Okenla

President OSU-OOU UK Alumni Chapter

(Nov 2019 -Nov 2023)