HISTORY OF THE FACULTY

The Faculty of Dental Sciences of the College of Medicine, University of Lagos established in 1964 by a senate resolution. It is the oldest Dental School in Nigeria/West Africa and indeed the First Dental Faculty to be promoted and established in Sub-Saharan Africa by Black Africans.The history of the Faculty/Dental Centre and indeed dental education in Nigeria will be incomplete without delving into the history of  the establishment of the College of Medicine of the University of Lagos (CMUL).

The idea of establishing a Medical School in Lagos was the brainchild of the then Minister of Health, Dr. M.A. Majekodunmi.  One of the visions for the Medical School was in the words of Chief Majekodunmi“one which would be a great centre of learning and scholarship and a training ground for men and women dedicated to the service of their fellow men/women and many of who die daily for lack of adequate medical care”.  To achieve these objectives, the 350-bed Mainland Hospital at Idi-Araba, Surulere was formally designated the Lagos University Hospital.

On 5th February, 1962, Chief Majekodunmi went on an extensive tour of UK, USA and Canada for the purpose of recruiting the Academic and Clinical Staff of the College and Teaching Hospital respectively.
On the 3rd October, 1962, the Hon. Dr.Nnamdi Azikwe,the then Governor General performed the formal dedication ceremony of the Lagos University Medical School with all the three regional premiers present.
The first batch of 28 Medical Students started Lectures in the same October 1962.  In 1967, the first batch of 27 Medical Students graduated from the College.
The first Provost and Chief Medical Director of the University of Lagos Medical School and the Teaching Hospital was Prof Horatio Oritsejolomi Thomas ; a general surgeon who operated and conducted researches into Ameloblastoma ( the most common jaw tumour in Black Africans). It was him who initiated the founding of the Dental school.

The University of Lagos Senate met in 1964.and passed a resolution to establish the Dental School. Prof J W Taylor a British Oral Surgeon who was at the time the Chief Dental Surgeon of Northern Nigeria was appointed the Head of the new Dental department. He, however did not resumed formal duties until October 1965: He had a year to plan for the admission of the first set of students in October 1966.

The new Dental department was housed in a bungalow which students and staff then referred to as the ‘Pako house” possibly as a result of the wooden partitions used to demarcate offices and clinics. Prof Fox Taylor recruited Prof Johnston ( who graduated DDS from the  University of Eden) Prof Johnston was a consultant in restorative and he set up the first restorative laboratory for students training. Prof F E Okoisor was recruited as a Clinical tutor and shared the same office with Prof Taylor initially.
Additional staff like Prof. J.J. Ana, N.E. Henshaw, J.O. Akinosi, and E.S. Akpata F.E. were later recruited and helped in its development.  The Dental department was later upgraded into a Division of Dentistry with three departments- Oral Surgery and Pathology, Restorative Dentistry and Preventive Dentistry.The first set of students admitted in 1966 graduated   in 1971.

As the reputation of the school grew as a center of excellence in Dental education students from other African Countries (Ghana, Zimbabwe) and the Carribean were admitted.

The Faculty presently consists of five departments namely:

    Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery.
    Oral And Maxillofacial Pathology/Biology.
    Restorative Dentistry.
    Child Dental Health
    Preventive Dentistry