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Joseph Utsev: Meet Nigeria’s new Water & Sanitation Minister

Prof. Joseph Terlumun Utsev is a multifaceted personality known for his exceptional contributions as a civil and water engineer, academic, politician, philanthropist, entrepreneur, and administrator.

Professor Joseph Terlumun Utsev, hailing from the renowned Utsev Akaa lineage of Mbaakura, Mbagen, Buruku, Benue State, Nigeria, stands out as a multi-talented individual excelling in civil engineering, academia, politics, and entrepreneurship.

Earning his Bachelor’s in Civil Engineering from the Federal University of Agriculture Makurdi, Prof. Utsev stood out, bagging the Second Class Honours “Upper Division” in 2004. His insatiable thirst for knowledge took him to the eminent University of Nigeria Nsukka, where he achieved his Master’s and Ph.D. in Water Resources and Environmental Engineering in 2007 and 2011.

With a rich 17-year background in engineering and academia, Prof. Utsev has become a prominent figure in the West African engineering landscape. He has enriched the domain of Civil Engineering with about 40 research papers published in esteemed national and international journals.

His dynamic career features roles like the Deputy Director and, subsequently, Director at the Centre for Entrepreneurship Development, Federal University of Agriculture Makurdi (2013-2017). His visionary leadership led to the launch of seven skill-building workshops for students and boosted the university’s internally generated revenue.

Recognizing his exceptional contributions, he was appointed Honourable Commissioner of the Ministry of Water Resources and Environment, Benue State, in 2017. His influential role in the Idye Basin Phase II drainage construction underscores his commitment to infrastructural progression.

National accolades poured in in 2020, with President Muhammadu Buhari appointing him the Executive Director of Engineering at the Lower Benue River Basin Development Authority, Makurdi. Under his supervision, several pivotal projects, including dams and roads, saw completion.

As the pioneering Rector of the Federal Polytechnic Wannune, Benue State, Prof. Utsev had aimed to elevate the institution to international standards, addressing academic and vocational concerns in Nigeria.

His vast accomplishments have earned him widespread recognition, including the title of Best Honourable Commissioner in Nigeria’s Water/Environmental sector (2018) and the Academic Noble Award by the Institute of Industrial Administration of Nigeria.

As a member of professional elites, he’s registered with COREN and is a distinguished fellow of esteemed engineering societies in Nigeria.

Beyond his professional endeavors, Prof. Utsev’s academic zeal sees him supervising countless research projects. His active participation in global conferences highlights his dedication to continued learning.

He relishes reading, pioneering research, travel, and badminton outside the professional arena. A supportive family and a fulfilling marriage complete his life.

Prof. Utsev’s journey epitomizes commitment, proficiency, and zeal. His contributions to the engineering and academic world in Nigeria and globally are unparalleled.

Recent updates inform that Prof. Joseph Utsev has been appointed Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation of the Federal Republic of Nigeria by President Asijwau Bola Ahmed Tinubu.