my leadership positions have been based on the perceptions of students to drive home their yearnings and the believe to make things work differently.
Introduce yourself ?
Hi…my name is Dara Oluwafemi Second to the last child of a family of eight and an native of Ode-Remo in Ogun state. A Christian.
Most of my friends call me ‘MAJOR DRE’ as a nickname which I have loved and adopted as a good nickname*chuckles*.
What are your Hobbies?
As to my hobbies, I enjoy different things but most importantly, I love cooking, playing football, travelling and meeting people which has endeared me a social status amongst friends and colleagues.
Any previous Posts held in the faculty ?
Over the period of my studentship in faculty of law, my leadership positions have been based on the perceptions of students to drive home their yearnings and the believe to make things work differently. Hence, over these few years starting when I was a diploma student, I was the class rep of my class. With this, I gained leadership experience and the need to advocate when necessary for your classmates with lecturers. In year 2, though not elected class rep, I worked within the corridors of power of the class and helped in varying capacities. As a result, I was a member of the career fair committee for that year. Moving on to 300 level, I was elected the General secretary of Gani Fawehinmi Students Chamber and National Association of Ogun State Students respectively where a lot of experience and leadership qualities were gained. In the same Year, I was elected a senator of my then year3 constituency. As a result of my dexterity and passion for leadership, I endeared vying for the position of General Secretary of LSS which I currently occupy to the Glory of God.
a leader with no vision has no roadmap in achieving his mission……My vision for the faculty is to set standards comparable to ivy league schools abroad. To make sure that there’s robust academic excellence balanced with a social hub and welfare for its students
Any Political ambitions?
Errrm…I wouldn’t say for now. I believe in the school of thought of never jumping the gun. As a matter of fact, life should be taken one step at a time. However, where ever you find yourself in life, be a change agent.
What’s your vision for the faculty?
I’ll like to say, a leader with no vision has no roadmap in achieving his mission. Visions are things for the future…things of lasting legacies. The faculty of law, University of Lagos is the best law faculty in Nigeria and the Nation’s pride when it comes to legal education. My vision for the faculty is to set standards comparable to ivy league schools abroad. To make sure that there’s robust academic excellence balanced with a social hub and welfare for its students where they can derive value wherever they find themselves.In other words, if one invest in people, you’ve given them a legacy of value which is for the benefit of all.
If you lose….? What should we expect?
In every election, even in circular elections, there must always be winners and losers. But I must admonish that this election should not be seen that way. We (the presidential candidates) are all winners for coming out to stand elected. In this regard, we must look forward to future perspective rather than unnecessary enmity of today because of lss elections. I need everyone because no one knows tomorrow.
Who do you consider your greatest opponent?
Greatest opponent? *chuckles* Every presidential candidate is qualified to be the president. For standing up to be elected, each has what he wants achieve for the LSS. We all have different ideas and ideologies which we want to implement. Every candidate is a strong man. I don’t see a particular candidate as the greatest opponent. This is because in politics, you don’t undermine any candidate. Your imaginative weakness of a candidate might just be his greatest strength (selling point) or vice versa.
What are the key changes you plan to make as president?
It is no longer news that am vying for the position of LSS President. For me, I am not vying for it because I want to be an ordinary or conventional LSS President. Am vying for it because leadership for me is passion and there are certain changes I plan to implement regarding the strategic repositioning or reformation of lss, academic excellence of students, capacity building, social interaction and welfare of students. In all, these are my core areas of focus which needs to be remedied if we are to have a viable lss now and in the future.
What defect in the law student society do you see now that really needs to be remedied?
Nothing is perfect except that which God created. We can only work towards perfection. Hence, Lecturer/student relationship, Lss/student relationship, Lss/ Chambers and Associations relationship, results issues of affected students, non-availability of course advisers of our students, disrepair of infrastructure and several other things are some of the defects which need immediate remedies.
Any new ground breaking innovation for the faculty?
Legacy is not a selfish dream or a one man show. These legacies are not in tangible things but are in intangible things. People need to derive values for themselves which necessitated the legacy dream. Legacy is for the future.
Ground breaking innovations such as crash programme aimed at lessening the psychological trauma students face when courses are carried over.
Business Academy aimed at uncovering the business potentials of our students in guaranteeing self-reliance and independence even as students.
International Student exchange programme aimed at boosting the brand name lss within international states and also enhancing and broadening the horizon of our students thereby creating bilateral relationships amongst the students and schools.
Advocacy and research institute aimed at enhancing oral speaking, debating skill, writing of articles, research of law reviews, and brief writing of all law students.
Laugh out law (Lol) … A social event where comedy meets music aimed at easing off the academic forte.
Achivers Trust fund which is aimed at securing academic recognition of grant for best students in every level.
Internet project which is aimed at helping our students with online research,projects,assignments, course registration etc.
Revival of the third arm of lss I.e the judiciary.
What are your plans for students representation to the faculty/ student relations to the faculty in terms of course registration, faculty dues, faculty registration, result,etc.?
Our students are quintessential and unique, therefore their interests should come first in any dealing or propositions within and outside the faculty. In this regard, plans are underway in relation to course registration. Hence when there’s the installed WiFi (which is secured already) in the faculty, students can register in due time. As a result, students can register with their laptops, tabs, phones or other enabled gadgets or in the lss office using the available pcs. Also the need for prompt reminders using bulk sms, broadcast messages,emails as a means of dissemination of information so as to curb late registration of our students.
In relation to faculty dues, it is no longer news that we pay the highest faculty dues, however with honest dialogue with the Dean, this can be corrected. Also the issue as regards price for lamination of exam dockets will be reduced. Our students can be rest assured that these will be resolved soon.
As regards results issues, which has been a burden on students, the plan is simple. I believe that LSS as a body should be the platform in resolving results issues for its students. Thereby collating the results of affected students and forwarding same to the Dean and the Dean will in return forward to the sub-Dean for adequate processing. With this, the collective interests of the affected students are sorted. This however calls for the importance of liaison officers for each class or level.
All in all, the burning issues and interests of the students should be the focal point of a progressive administration.
What are your past qualifications (as regards chambers /societies)?
Interestingly, my leadership journey started majorly when I became a member of Gani Fawehinmi Students Chamber in year2. In year 3, I advanced to being the General Secretary of the chamber which offered me the privilege of knowing about administrative workings and I was equally a senator of my then constituency.
Do you feel holding positions will aid or mar your presidency aspiration?
In my view, holding positions puts you a step ahead of your contemporaries because in all of these, you must have shown consistency, experience, commitment, dedication, service, integrity, loyalty, transparency, selflessness, drive, vigour, charisma, yellow pages, etc…so all these puts one in the driving seat. This shows that you’ve succeeded working hard and smart in various capacities held.
Your plans for chamber /societies and the problem of donor fatigue?
Chambers and societies are sequel to been appendages of Lss. So there has to be a robust relationship between them. In achieving this, the lss and chambers/societies will work hand in hand for the benefit of the entire students of the faculty in achieving a common goal of securing the best for its students. In relation to this, we would have solved the issue of donor fatigue.
Any Internally generated revenue plans?
The Lss is a student society and as far as I know, no student body or society is to run a commercialized venture. However, there are plans for internally generated revenue but this is subject to the approval of the Dean and school management.
Any lessons learnt from working with or watching previous administrations?
Lessons are learnt to improve one. Obviously, I’ve learnt alot from within and outside the lss. Been part of the current administration and having seen other past administrations and worked outside of the lss, lessons have been learnt and mistakes have been made in past administrations which shall be improved upon thereby providing a viable foundation for a lasting legacy.
What do you hope to see from your opponent in the election?
Smiles all the way from my opponents…Though we would test our strengths, I must humbly submit that it’s not a do or die affair.it’s not war. We should learn to embrace one another even before, during and after the elections rather than seeing ourselves as political enemies. It’s not necessary I must say.
You all seem to have the same ideas. What sets you apart from every other person?
Ideas may seem the same yeah, but the way one implements them might be different. Thus, the machinery, apparatus, platform, network,the connect, are the procedural structure that sets me apart from every other person. Similarly, my years of service and experience, commitment to service, dedication, selflessness, transparency, integrity, genuineness, vision, values and laudable and realistic innovations combined together to give a lasting legacy to every law student sets me apart from every other person.
– On a personal note, what do you hope to achieve by being LSS president?
Like I mentioned earlier, I don’t want to be the convention Lss president who would not be remembered when gone but I want to be that president that would have made immeasurable impact on people’s lives in all ramifications. A president who would have invested in people in order for them to derive values for themselves now and in future. A president who would give its students hope for today and tomorrow. A president that would establish legacies for the present and future because the things you do for yourself are gone when you’re gone but the things you do for others remain your legacy. This is my dream. This is my vision. This is who I am.
What is a perfect day for you?
No specific perfect day for me really. All days are perfect. Lol! Open to all situations really.
Any strange obsessions?
Strange obsessions….errrm. thinking…. None
Who are your role models?
Christiano Ronaldo…his hard work regiments, perseverance,consistency and discipline has led him to great success. Hes my role model *smiles*
My dad…A great man who will always stand by every good decision of mine and will always have my back come rain or shine is my mentor.
What have done on a personal note that has contributed the Faculty in general?
Well, the faculty boasts itself of intellectuals in varying capacities. However, in my own little quota, I started a Note Series in my year2 and till date this has benefited a mammoth number of students in the faculty. It’s a great thing of joy when you meet students on the road and they tell you “thank you for your Dara’ s Note Series, it helped me last semester and it reflected in my results”. I feel excited most times because it’s a fulfillment for me seeing that the note was helpful. In life my guiding principle and philosophy is for you to shine as light, just be as silent as the light.
Thank you and God bless even as we strive to establish lasting legacies.
Published by Teni Akeju