Seminary Archive


Cardinal Ekandem Seminary, Uyo, initially christened, ‘Cardinal Ekandem Seminary College’ was established in 1976, by the then Bishop of Calabar Diocese, Most Rev. Dr. Brian Usanga to cater for the teeming indigenes of Uyo and its environs who had the choice of pastoral vocation but could not access the then Calabar diocesan minor seminary because of its distance.

The institution was named after Dominic Cardinal Ignatius Ekandem, the first Anglophone West African to be consecrated a Bishop for the Roman Catholic Church and subsequently, the first African to be created a Cardinal.

A man of many firsts in all respect and an outstanding churchman of the 20th Century, Cardinal Ekandem’s life and dedicated priesthood had been a source of light to the hitherto ‘dark continent’ and a formidable model to many who wished to serve God in that respect. Naming the seminary after him came as a recognition of his exceptionalism and a modelling symbol for the students who were aspiring priests.

From its inception in 1976, amid the political, social and economic hitches that had bathe the Nigerian State, even till today, the Seminary has been blessed with erudite leadership and management insight, with beaming enthusiasm and commitment to service. This has been responsible for the envious height the Seminary has attended today.

The following have dutifully served as Rector of this noble institution.
     1.     Msgr. Godwin Akpan (Late)                                       1976 
     2.     Very Rev. Fr. Gall Okon (Late)                                 1977
     3.     Very Rev. Fr Dr. Leo Etim                                   1978 - 1979
     4.     Most Rev. Dr.  Joseph Ekuwem                                1979 - 1980
     5.     Rt. Rev. Msgr. Emmanuel Umoetok                              1980 - 1982
     6.     Very Rev. Fr Sabastian Eboh (Late)                              1982 - 1984                      
     7.     Very Rev. Fr Patrick Okure (Late)                               1984 - 1986
     8.     Very Rev. Fr Dr. Michael Idobo                                1986 - 1990
     9.     Very Rev. Fr Michael Bassey                                  1991 – 1994
10.      Very Rev. Fr Augustus Effiong                            1994 – 1996
11.      Very Rev. Fr Ephraim Asanausung                         1996 - 2000
12.      Very Rev. Fr Dr Michael Idobo                          2000 – 2006
13.      Very Rev. Fr Francis Essien                          2006 – 2007
14.      Very Rev. Fr Isidore Akpan                          2007 - 2012
15.      Very Rev. Fr Ephraim Ukpe                         2012 till Date

Growth and Structure

The Seminary started off at Uyo Town Hall, Akpapan Street, Uyo Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom State in 1976. It began with about twenty students. When the population had risen considerably, the school moved to the Catholic Education Center, Uyo (the present day, St. Dominic Church) where there was a larger space for classes and admiration.

Seeing the prospect of the fast-growing school and the need for a conducive environment to be created for the formation of the seminarians, arrangements were made for the school to move to its permanent site. However, it was through the assistance of Chief Dominic Utuk that the present site was acquired and dedicated as a permanent geographical location for the Seminary.

Faced with the problem of structures, the leadership of Very Rev. Fr Dr. Leo Etim saw the erection of the first building in 1978. This achievement served the Seminary an administrative block, partitioned-out classrooms for the now fifty plus students and a small hall to serve as a chapel.

Still, the Seminary could not accommodate her students. Seminarians had to operate outside the school from Eka Street and some, from the Pastoral Centre. However, by 1980, the leaderships of Bishop Joseph Ekuwem and Msgr. Emmanuel Umoetok were able to put forth three hostel blocks named after St. John, for the students who had now numbered about a hundred.

Over the years, with the knowledgeable leadership and frugal management of scares resources, there have been recorded significant changes in the structural, moral, academic and aesthetic outlook of the Seminary. These transformations have unarguably placed the seminary on a very high pedestal among its contemporaries.
Besides, with the addition of the current projects undergone by the present leadership - water factory, state-of-the-art auditorium/drama theatre, dedicated classrooms, school farms, et cetera – the Seminary has grown into a modern sophisticated academic facility with the capability of producing enterprising minds.

Academic/Moral Formation
As a minor seminary, Cardinal Ekandem Seminary runs both the Junior and Senior Programmes specified in the National Curriculum of Education – offering wide variety of subjects in the Sciences, Arts, Commercial and Vocational studies.

From a strong team of professional teachers who are experts in their dedicated fields, to large, spacious, traditional and dedicated classrooms, perfectly equipped laboratories for practicals in sciences and vocationals, a large productive and entrepreneurial school farms in poultry, piggery, rabbitry, and cultivational farmland,  well stocked libraries, professionally staffed sickbay to cater for minor ailments of the students and a standby affiliated hospital, Uwakmfon Hospital, to attend to major cases whenever the need arises, the Seminary remains one of the very few establishments defined by the expensive principles of excellence and credibility.

For the past forty-three years of its existence, Cardinal Ekandem Seminary has formed out credible and very industrious Nigerians both priests and lay. Very Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Efiok Effiong, Former Chairman of Oron Local Government, Hon. Victor Ini Okon, Very Rev. Fr. Dr. Justin Udoma, Engr. Mfon Essien, Engr Emmanuel Ekandem, Barrister Austin Ekpo and the chairman of the Nigerian Union of Journalist, Akwa Ibom State Chapter, Elder Patrick Albert, are the very few resounding ambassadors of this great institution.

Since 1976, the Seminary has been graduating well-trained students who are now very important personalities in the country and have contributed greatly to the success and development of the country in all the major field of enterprise.