From Austine Tule, Makurdi
A senior lecturer at the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Dr. Louis Oparaku, has been conferred the best researcher award in the academic world of science, engineering and medicine by an international organisation, VDGOOD, based in Chennai, India.
According to the management, Dr. Oparaku’s Ph.D research work on the gullies of Idah -Ankpa plateau of the Anambra Basin is the best of its kind.
“The Idah-Ankpa plateau comprises the whole of Igala land in Kogi state and the Ogbadibo local government area in Benue state. Here the underlying geological formations consist of the highly erodible ajalli sandstones, the more resistant upper coal measures and the most resistant lower coal measures,” it said.
The VDGOOD noted that the researcher’s findings and publications on gully erosion on Idah-Ankpa plateau have been generating global interest among researchers in the field,hence his invitation to explain the subject of his research and subsequent merit awards.
Reacting to the award, Oparaku, who is the senior lecturer in the Department of Agricultural and Developmental Engineering, said since he innovated a procedure for estimating the volume of solids exuded from a gully, he has received over 20 invitations to international conferences and workshops to throw more lights on his work.
The environmental consultant of repute noted that funding of trips for more research works has been a major hindrance, but expressed the hope that with encouragement from international bodies, more will be done.
According to the don, even with some hindrances on the way, he was able to carry out 21 publications in local and international journals and 3 articles as chapters in edited books.
“Out of the 21 journal publications, I’m the first author in 12 and the sole author in two. I’m also the sole author in three of the articles published as chapters in edited books”.
He said, at the moment, seven of his papers are being solicited for publication as chapters in edited books, including a publication of his work in an Elsevier journal which was emblazoned on their website as adjudged the best-written and most – innovative article in the journal.