The National Assembly, yesterday, promised to look into the allegations of corruption in the Nigerian universities in order to sanitise the system.
This is as non-teaching staff in the universities under the umbrella of Joint Action Committee (JAC) accused the university administrations of indulging in corrupt practices while the government appears not to be disturbed with the ugly situation despite the Federal Government’s anti-corruption fight.
Meanwhile, the leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), has accused the Federal Government of always breaching agreements it freely entered into with workers.
JAC comprising the National Association of Academic Technologists (NAAT), Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities and Educational Institutions (NASU) and the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU), staged a protest at the Ministry of Education and the National Assembly over the alleged decay in the universities.
Security operatives had a hectic day at the Federal Secretariat, Abuja, when they tried to stop the protesting university non-teaching staff to have access to the Ministry of Education where they had gone to register their protest with the Minister, Malam Adamu Adamu.
The protesting workers had to use all their strength to force the gate that was locked with heavy presence of the policemen to open for the workers led by the National President of NLC, Comrade Ayuba Wabba and the Chairman of JAC, Comrade Samson Ugwoke to gain access to the ministry.
Infuriated by the development, the workers chanted anti Adamu songs and even called for his resignation.
At the National Assembly, the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki represented by Senator Bukar Abba Ibrahim from Yobe East, assured the protesting workers that the National Assembly would look into their grievances, especially the allegation of corruption in the universities.
“I also want to assure that every worker will get its allowances. All the demands that you have made will be tabled before the House.”
Also speaking, Senator Sani Shehu, assured the non academic teaching staff that in the name of the struggle and in the name of the Nigerian people that he will peruse their demand to logical conclusion.”
Presenting their grievances, the Chairman of JAC and National President of SSANU, Comrade Samson Ugwoke said, “We need to let the National Assembly know why we are sad. We need to let them know and sensitize them on the injustices that are going on in the university system.
“We need to let them know the plight of the Nigerian universities, and also workers in the system. We want them to come in and investigate the universities and find out why our graduates are not employable. We are not pleased with the state of affairs and strongly believe that with your intervention, all matters that led to the current industrial action of the Joint Action Committee unions shall be addressed.
“We also deem it imperative to humbly draw the attention of His Excellency to the ongoing strike embarked upon by the non-teaching staff unions based on our demands for the full proper implementation of our 2009 agreement. We have also had several meetings with the Federal Government.
“The specific issues are: One, the reinstatement of our members in the university staff schools, who were removed from the budget of the universities based on obnoxious budget call circular from National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission in gross contravention of the 2009 agreement with Federal Government which also the National Industrial Court has ruled in our favour.
“Two, the issue of payment of Earned Allowances where a sum of N23billion released by government in September, 2017, was skewed in favour of a sister union by some government officers thereby leaving 11 percent of the said amount to the non teaching staff.
“Three, the issue of shortfalls in salary payment where our members have been receiving fractions of their salaries for upward of a year now.
Four, the issue of career progression for Technologists to CONTISS 14 and 15, in line with the agreement reached with NAAT.
UBEC, RSUBEB Begin Digital School Construction In Rivers
As part of government’s efforts to realize its dream of making the nation’s educational system a global digital community, the Federal Government, through the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) and the Rivers State Universal Basic Education Board (RSUBEB), have commenced the construction of a modern digital Smart Basic School in the state, with 14-month completion schedule.
The school, which is a pilot modern basic education facility, is designed by UBEC in collaboration with RSUBEB to entrench digitization of ICT-driven basic education system across the 36 states and FCT, Abuja.
Speaking with journalists at a brief handover ceremony of the proposed smart school site to UBEC by RSUBEB at the Community Primary School, Uzuoba in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state, over the weekend, the National Consultant, UBEC Smart School Project, Prof Masud Abdulkarim, said the school was designed to incorporate digital technology into the basic education system in the country, which he said, has been in practice in advanced countries for years.
Abdulkarim stated that the desire of the Federal Government was to ensure that Nigerian children were not left out in the digital space, saying that the school would have great impact on the youth and give them equal opportunity to compete globally in the technology world.
He described the school as the first of its kind in the history of the country, adding that the school would have four categories that would take care of the nursery, handicapped, primary as well as junior secondary students with a maximum of 35 persons per class of two streams.
Abdulkarim noted that with the strategy, no fewer than 700 children would be enrolled into the school.
According to him, the school would afford the children the opportunity to become robotic engineers, artificial intelligence (AI) engineers and ICT engineers, and added that as future leaders, they need to be equipped and encouraged.
The UBEC consultant commended the state government for the provision of the school for the construction of the smart school, and described the site as the most suitable across the 23 states so far visited.
“Let me thank the RSUBEB for the site, in fact, it is the best and most suitable site among the 23 states we have so far visited. Because it has an existing school structure with a fence to protect our equipment and infrastructure. Moreso, the project will impact on the schools around because they will benefit from our Wi-Fi”, he stated.
Abdulkarim called on the host community to jealously guard the project as a growing child, till its maturity to adult stage, saying that they were important stakeholders in the project.
Also speaking on behalf of the Chairman of Rivers State Universal Basic Education Board (RSUBEB), Ven Fyneface Akah, a commissioner in the board, Chief Faith Amaso, called for synergy between the contractors and host community in other to remove every impediment that may affect the delivery of the project on schedule.
Akah opined that the project, when completed, would improve basic education in the state, and expressed happiness over the commencement of the project in the state.
Rivers United Beat Young Africans Of Tanzania 1-0
Rivers United Football Club of Port Harcourt, yesterday, at the Adokiye Amasiemaka Football Stadium, trounced the Young Africans Football Club of Tanzania 1-0 in a return leg match of the ongoing Confederation of African Football Club Champions League competition.
The stadium, which was filled to capacity, witnessed a trilling encounter, which saw the crowd craving for more.
It would be recalled that Rivers United had defeated the Young Africans of Tanzania 1-0 in the first leg of the championship at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, last Sunday.
Reacting to the feat, the Chairman of Degema Local Government Area, Hon. Michael John Williams, expressed joy over the victory of the Rivers United FC of Port Harcourt against the Young Africans of Tanzania in the ongoing Confederation of African Football (CAF) Champions League.
The match, which ended 1-0 in favour of the Rivers United FC, took place at the Adokiye Amiesimaka International Stadium in Rivers State, yesterday.
Top government officials in the state, including Rivers Deputy Governor, Dr. Ipalibo Harry Banigo; LG council chairmen and commissioners, amongst other sports enthusiasts, graced the event.
Speaking on the outcome of the match, Williams stated that the Rivers United players exhibited the Rivers team spirit, which culminated in their victory.
The political heavyweight in Degema LGA, noted that nothing would be impossible for Rivers people to achieve when they work together in unison and firm determination.
He added that the massive support and huge investment in the sports sector by the Governor Nyesom Wike administration, also motivated the Rivers team, who worked hard to secure a back-to-back victory.
By: Nelson Chukwudi
NJC Okays Six Chief Judges, 30 Others For Appointment
The National Judicial Council (NJC), has recommended the appointment of chief judges and 30 others as judicial officers to beef up judicial functions in some states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
At its 95th meeting held on September 15 and 16, 2021, the council considered the list of candidates presented by its Interview Committee, and recommended the 36 successful candidates to their respective state governors for appointment as heads of courts and other judicial officers in Nigeria.
They are Hon. Justice Richard O. Olorunfemi as chief judge, Kogi State, Hon. Justice Joe Itsebaga Acha for Edo, Hon. Justice Akintoroye Williams Akin for Ondo, Hon. Justice Husseini Baba Yusuf for FCT, Hon. Justice Ekaette Francesca Fabian-Obot for Akwa Ibom, and Hon. Justice J. O. Adeyeye for Ekiti State.
Others are Hon. Kadi Baba Gana Mahdi as Grand Kadi, Yobe; Umaru Ahmad Liman as Grand Kadi, Bauchi; Hon. Justice Osagede Osado Emmanuel as President, Customary Court of Appeal, Nasarawa; Hon. Justice Mashud Akintunde Akinfemi Abass as President, Customary Court of Appeal, Oyo State; and Siyaka Momoh Jimoh Usman as President, Customary Court of Appeal, Kogi State.
Three judges are recommended for High Court of Gombe, and they are Zainab Abdulkadir Rasheed, Abdussalam Muhammad, and Daurabo Suleiman Sikka.
Akwa Ibom has Effiong Asukwo Effiong; Bauchi has Nana Fatima Jibril; while Kaduna High Court has Abdulkarim Mahmud.
The three candidates recommended for Katsina State are Kabir Shuaibu, Ibrahim Ishaku Mashi, and Ibrahim Abubakar Mande, while Prof Alero Akeredolu was recommended for Ondo State.
Four successful candidates for Oyo State are Olusola Adebisi Adetujoye, Folabimpe Beatrice Segun Olakojo, Prof Taiwo Elijah Adewale, and Kareem Adeyimika Adedokun.
Kogi State has three candidates, and they are Abubakar Sule Ibrahim, Abdullah Sulyman, as well as Aminu Ali Eri.
Two Kadis for Sharia Court of Appeal are Adamu Kuna Jibril and Ahmed Baba Bala, while the four for Bauchi are Musa Sani Abubakar, Mahdi Manga, Khamis Al-Hamidallah Muhammad and Sani Musa with Ondo State having one in the person of Orimisan James Okorisa and Oyo Customary Court of Appeal having Ajadi Olubukola Omolayo.
A statement by the NJC Director of Information, Mr Soji Oye, and released in Abuja, yesterday, said that all the recommended candidates are expected to be sworn-in after approval by President Muhammadu Buhari, and their respective state governors, and confirmation by the respective state Houses of Assembly.
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