Maasai Mara University through the present Council Chairman Dr. Samuel Agonda Ochola and the University Management piloted by the Vice-Chancellor Prof. Mary K. Walingo, is humbled to convey its gratitude and commiserations to the family and friends of the late former Council Chairman Prof. John Joseph Okumu.
Gratefulness is in order as the deceased is an incredible voice of reason enshrined in the history of Maasai Mara University. Prof. Okumu was the second Chairman of the Maasai Mara University’s Council that was inaugurated on 12th April 2013, a fete where he challenged the Varsity Council and Management to be pro-active and work smartly towards the realization of Varsity’s command.
Maasai Mara University fraternity approvals regarding Prof. Okumu’s tenure as Council Chair (April 2013- February 2017) resonates on notable developmental strides and milestones that have seen the Varsity ranked as the fastest-growing University among those chartered in 2013.
Remarkably, Prof. Okumu did not rest until he saw the young Varsity attain first-class teaching and learning infrastructure. This is attested by the state of- the- art Ultra-Modern Main Gate perimeter wall, projects that though at their climax of completion are already branding the Institution globally.
Accommodation challenges in the Varsity are no longer the talk of the town as Prof. Okumu engineered the establishment of an 850-bed capacity Mara Hostel that gives ladies ample stay. Likewise, lecturers and students are enjoying modern lecture halls and conference rooms in the completed 1st phase of the new tuition bloc as other 10 phases are underway.
He also saw the hatching of a five-year Strategic Plan 2013-2017 that was aligned to the mandate of the University which is teaching, research, consultancy, community and outreach services. Besides, the late Prof. Okumu is lauded for championing the installation of an Enterprise Resource Programme (ERP) – A System aimed at computerizing the University’s accounting processes to enhance efficiency and accuracy.
Moreover, he is remembered to have propelled Maasai Mara University to the attainment of ISO 9001:2008 Certification which explicitly communicated to the University stakeholders the institutionalization of Quality Management System by the University.
Records also show that curriculum review of 52 undergraduate programmes and 54 postgraduate programmes which were submitted to the Commission for University Education for accreditation materialized in his tenure. Equally, Prof. Okumu did not relent urging the Council and Management to put in place comprehensive development programmes through linkages with other institutions Nationally and Internationally.
Principally, Maasai Mara University lives to applaud the late Prof. John Joseph Okumu for pitching a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the China-Africa Center for Research and Education & Wuhan Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China and Maasai Mara University, Kenya. The MOU has seen the flourishing of a Botanic Garden which harbors diverse medicinal plants and Research Laboratories.