By John Ikani
The Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) has bestowed the rank of professor upon Lieutenant-Colonel Abubakar-Surajo Imam, who heads the Department of Mechatronics Engineering at the institution.
Imam now holds the esteemed title of Professor of Mechatronics Engineering, a multidisciplinary field amalgamating mechanical engineering, electronics, computer science, and control engineering.
Notably, he is the first professor among serving personnel in the history of the Nigerian Army. The milestone was officially announced by the Registrar of the Academy, Brigadier-General A.M Tukur, in Kaduna, the capital of Kaduna State in Northwest Nigeria.
Tukur disclosed that the promotion, ratified during the NDA Council Meeting in September, took effect from October 1, 2022. The decision, he explained, reflects the council’s confidence in and recognition of Imam’s significant contributions to the Department of Mechatronics Engineering.
The new professor’s exemplary services and commitment to excellence in his field were acknowledged, with Tukur emphasizing that the recognition not only honours Imam but also underscores the NDA’s dedication to acknowledging and rewarding outstanding contributions within its academic community.
In extending congratulations on the well-deserved promotion, Tukur expressed the expectation that Imam would continue to work diligently to justify the confidence placed in him.
Abubakar-Surajo Imam, hailing from Kankia in Katsina State, holds a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Bayero University, Kano, and a master’s degree in Mechatronics from Newcastle University, United Kingdom. Additionally, he earned a PhD in Mechatronics and Robotics from the same university.
Imam’s military journey began when he joined the Nigerian Army as a member of Short Service Combatant Course 32, subsequently converting to Regular Commission. He has served in various units, including 1 Base Workshop, Technical Group EME, HQ Nigerian Army Electrical and Mechanical Engineers Corps, and DICON.
An Examiner and Member of the Central Selection Committee for Master’s and PhD candidates sponsored by the Petroleum Technology Development Fund, Imam is also a researcher with entities such as the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria (DICON), Defence Research and Development Bureau, Abuja, Command Engineering Depot, Buffalo Engineering Technology, and National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure.
He has attended over 40 international workshops and presented papers at conferences in the United Kingdom, Spain, Egypt, and the United States of America. Currently holding the positions of Head of the Department of Mechatronics Engineering, and Director of the Centre for Innovation and Creativity at the NDA, Imam has significantly elevated the Academy’s visibility among Nigerian Universities through his Research and Development efforts.
He played a pivotal role in establishing the NDA Department of Mechatronic Engineering and the Centre for Innovation and Creativity. The latter serves as a platform for realizing Nigeria’s Military Industrial Complex by promoting innovation and creativity in cutting-edge technologies related to both military and civil hardware and software solutions, thereby reducing the country’s dependence on foreign technical solutions.
Imam is also an accomplished author, with published books covering various aspects of Mechatronics, PIC Microcontrollers, Embedded Systems Design, Sensors and Actuators for Embedded Systems, Coding, Robotics, Drone Technology for Kids, and a Field Manual for Drone Technology, among others.