Umaru Shehu, a Nigerian professor of medicine who was born on 8 December 1930, was the university’s 11th vice chancellor of the University of Maiduguri. He is a past president of the Nigerian Academy of Science and a professor emeritus of community health at the University of Maiduguri.
The University of London awarded Professor Umaru an MBBS, or Bachelor of Medicine, degree.
He is the first head of the Department of Community Medicine at ABU Zaria, the former vice-chancellor of the University of Nigeria in Nsukka, the former sole administrator of the University of Maiduguri, the former pro-chancellor and chairman of the governing councils of Bayero University in Kano, and the University of Lagos. He is also a former professor emeritus of community health at the University of Maiduguri, the former president of the Nigerian Academy of Science,
President Goodluck Jonathan presenting the Centenary award to Shehu.
Shehu earned his first medical degree from the University of London (MBBS), and to top it off, he held the position of editor-in-chief of the British Medical while receiving a fellowship from the Institute of Cancer Research.
In the United Kingdom’s Southport Infirmary, Shehu began working as a pre-registration house surgeon in 1957. He returned to Nigeria that year and began working for the government of Northern Nigeria as a pre-registration house doctor before being promoted to the positions of medical officer, senior medical officer, principal medical officer, assistant chief medical officer, and chief medical officer (Preventive Services Division) between 1957 and 1968.
Later, he was offered the position of permanent secretary in the ministry of health and Chief Medical officer in North-Eastern State, but he turned it down. Instead, he moved to Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, where he accepted positions as reader and acting head of the department of community medicine from 1968 to 1970, deputy dean of the school of medicine from 1968 to 1970, acting director of the institute of health from 1969 to 1970, and professor of community medicine in 1970.
He served as the community medical department’s head from 1970 to 1978, the institute of health’s director from 1970 to 1977, the deputy vice-chancellor from 1975 to 1976, and the pro vice-chancellor (academic) from 1977 to 1978. From 1976 to 1977, the professor served as a visiting professor at a number of institutions, including the school of medicine at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, USA.
From 1978 to 1980, Shehu served as vice chancellor at the University of Nigeria in Nsukka.
However, from September 1970 to October 1970, he served as a temporary adviser for the World Health Organization (WHO), and from 1971 to 1973, he served as a short-term consultant for the organization. He also served as a consultant (technical discussions) for the 24th WHO regional committee for Africa.
He served as the Nigerian nation’s national WHO program coordinator and representative from 1980 to 1985, the director of the WHO’s sub-regional health development office 111 from 1985 to 1989, and the WHO envoy to Ethiopia in 1990. Shehu was designated as an honorary consulting physician at the University of Maiduguri from 1991 to the present, and he was made a professor emeritus in 2000.
From 1991 to 1993, he served as the provost of the college of medical sciences. From 1993 to 1994, he served as the University of Maiduguri’s sole administrator. Shehu served as the board of management chairman at the university college hospital in Ibadan from 1991 to 1994.
He served as provost and chairman of the governing council at Bayero University in Kano from 1993 to 1996. From 1996 to 1999, he also served as provost and chairman of the governing council at the University of Lagos. He participated in a number of national and international committees, councils, panels, and commissions.
Shehu served as the president of medical schools in Africa from 1973 to 1975 and served as an external examiner for the university of Ghana medical school’s public health program. He currently serves as the National Agency for the Control of AIDS’ head of the governing board, the chairman of the STOPAIDS organization’s board of governors, and (NACA). He was awarded a fellowship by the Institute of Cancer Research as well.