- As UNIUYO Holds 82nd Inaugural Lecture
By Mfon Okon
The University of Uyo (UNIUYO) 82nd Inaugural Lecturer, Prof. Benjamin Reuben Etuk has warned Nigerians to desist from exporting the nation’s agricultural, forest and solid mineral products without adding value to them in order to increase the earning and give skill and expertise to the local producers.
Prof. Etuk who is a Professor of Chemical and Process Engineering (Chemical Engineering Separation Process/Environmental Engineer) gave this advice when he delivered the 82nd series of the University of Uyo Inaugural Lecture on the topic: “Separation Process: The Inevitable For Better Life”, held on Thursday, July 29, 2021. The lecture took place at the 1000 TETFUND Seater Auditorium Main Campus, Along Nwaniba Road, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria.
The University Don said that processing of solid minerals and agricultural minerals such as cocoa, groundnut, fish, etc., which Nigeria have in abundance by the application of separation process techniques to obtain intermediate products and by-products which can be used for product manufacture, should be encouraged at medium and small scale levels. He explained that, this would only be encouraged through a well structured subsidized loan scheme devoid of political connotation and patronage.
According to him, “There is need to set up integrated farming and processing industries in the rural communities, since most of the by-products (wastes) obtained by separation process from such establishments can be used as bio-fertilizers, raw materials for other useful products and for the production of bio-fuels. This is bond to provide employment and bring development to such agrarian communities, thus reducing the “Keke-Napep (tricycle) congestion in our cities.
“The treatment of our industrial and domestic effluents before disposal should be strictly monitored and enforced to safe our land, water, and air from toxic and hazardous contamination. Instead of aggravating the environmental degradation of the Niger Delta region through destruction of the illegal refineries due to bunkering, modular refineries should be set up in this region where the practitioners of the illicit business can be given opportunity to showcase their expertise legally in the establishment and earn legitimate income”.
Prof. Etuk further stated that separation is an everyday activity in humans lives, material processing, product manufacture and environmental processes, be it natural or anthropogenic. On the material aspects of separation, the Lecturer said that the technique has been used to transform naturally occurring materials or processes into other useful products for the used of mankind.
He added that separation process removes impurities from raw materials, products and by-products as well as contaminants from air and water streams, adding that it also reduces wastes, increase productivity, recovery and purification of the desired products in a manufacturing process.
Prof. Etuk also explained how separation process would happened in the judgement day according to the Bible in 2 Corinthians 5:10, “We must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ, that everyone may receive the things done in his body, according to that he had done, whatever it be good or bad”. He also mentioned same according to Matthew 25:31-34, 41-46, “When the Son of man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: And before him shall be gathered all nations; and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats”.
The Separation Process expert left question for all believers in Christ to answer by asking, “If the Lord Jesus comes now, which group would one be when the separation process is carried out: on his left hand or the right hand?”
In his address, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Nyaudoh Ndaeyo thanked the Lecturer for his insightful lecture on the separation process, adding that his lecture has given full understand to many who were confused on the different between chemistry and chemical engineering. He said that Prof. Benjamin Etuk has proved himself as a professor. Also, as an elder in Qua Ibo Church, he has research beyond academic boundary, by giving clarity on how separation process would happen in the last day.
The Vice Chancellor further urged Prof. Etuk not to relax on carrying out more research as the University would look on to him in any moment so as to contribute his knowledge in research. Prof. Ndaeyo also said the he is happy that the Lecturer has shown to the audience that separation process is an indispensable process to human, as many people have embarked on it without knowing it, especially when they are making starch from cassava as explained by the Lecturer.
The Vice Chancellor further assured that his administration in the University will ensure that the Gown and Town integration is maintained through Inaugural Lecture, adding that Inaugural Lecture is a serious acdemic activity in UNIUYO.