The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), has urged the Federal Government to bar state governments proposing to establish new universities from accessing Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETfund) for a minimum of 10 years.
The union added that owners of proposed universities- whether federal or state- should provide verifiable growth plan for providing not less than 75 percent of their pensionable staff complement plus provision of requisite infrastructural facilities.
ASUU hinges its demand on the precarious state of state-owned universsities in Nigeria.
National President of ASUU, Prof Victor Osodeke, addressed reporters in Ilorin, Kwara State capital, at the end of the union’s national executive council meeting.
Prof Osodeke expressed dismay on the declining fortunes of state-owned universsities and their neglect by state governors, “whose responsibility it is to fund, staff, equip and make the universsities nationally and globally competitive.
“Unless urgent and necessary steps are taken, our state-owned universsities may soon collapse beyond redemption.”
Continuing, Prof Osodeke said, “politicians in the Fourth Republic have turned establishment of state universities into projects for appeasing electorate in their senatorial and state constituencies. While neglecting the existing state universities, some overzealous state governors have increased the rally to two or three.
“The more bizarre cases were governors who brazenly pronounced the creation of three or four state universities in one fell swoop. Nigerians should be worried that state universities, which should serve as an elixir to provision of university education, has turned an albatross for the Nigerian university system.
“Beside non-funding of capital projects, most state governors have also failed in the primary responsibility of regular payment of staff in their universities. Our recent analysis has shown that only five of the state-owned universsities have their monthly subventions corresponding with their monthly wage bills. 17 state universities receive monthly subventions far below the monthly wage bills, thereby forcing these institutions to augment salaries from so-called internally generated revenue (IGR).”
Mmom Warns Against Harassment Of School Principals
The commissioner who stated this last Friday in a statement signed by the Senior Information Officer of Ministry, Tochi Abinye Pepple and made available to said what his ministry is doing is random check to ensure that schools have resumed in compliance with directives of government on school resumption.
Prof. Mmom urged principals and head teachers to be at alert and to arrest such persons who parade themselves as members of taskforce from the ministry and report such to him for proper action.
In his words” I have not set up any taskforce or committee to do any form of monitoring. Any person who comes to your school should come with original letters signed by myself. Education is free in Rivers State as His Excellency has declared”.
The commissioner further stated that if there is need to set up any committee or task force by his ministry, that he will also discuss it with the principals and make it public for everyone to know.
He advised those involved in such art to desist henceforth or be ready to face the music.
Prof. Mmom further warned principals to stop extorting money from students and pupils through admission reminding them that Education remains free in Rivers State.
By: Susan Serekara-Nwikhana
Anambra Bans Use Of Miniskirts As School Uniform
Commissioner for Education, Prof. Ngozi Chuma-Udeh, stated in Awka on Sunday that the announcement of the ban became necessary as schools resume on Monday.
She said the ban had been communicated to Education Secretaries of public and private schools in the state.
The commissioner condemned the growing trend of wearing miniskirts as school uniform and said it was morally wrong and unacceptable in children of school age.
“A student should look smart, well groomed, project positive vibes and not be indecently dressed for school.
“The acceptable length for uniforms in the state remains knee length and not above the knee, which is fast becoming the fashion trend in schools,’’ she noted.
The commissioner said Education Secretaries had been charged to ensure that schools complied with the directive to salvage the future of students in the state. Chuma-Udeh also urged the secretaries to instil the right morals and discipline in students so that they would be well-behaved and grow to become responsible adults.
Strike: Group Urges ASUU To Be Responsible In Its Negotiations
The PSM also urged the Federal Government to withdraw its law suit against ASUU at the Industrial Court “as this will further waste the already wasted time of Nigerian students”.
The President of PSM, Mr Bestman Okereafor, disclosed this in a statement made available to News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Enugu on Sunday.
Okereafor noted that it was regrettable that the strike had been allowed to linger beyond seven months.
The PSM boss, while appealing for a compromise between both parties, enumerated the recent losses caused by the lingering strike.
“It is regrettable that actions of both parties have led to shutting down of universities for seven months over the continuous strike which has obviously drastically affected the academic calendars.
“The continuous strike has also deprived university students from joining their polytechnic counterparts in mobilising and partaking in National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
“ Information at our disposal reveals a UNIBEN staff committed suicide few weeks ago,” he said.
He appealed to well meaning Nigerians, especially prominent leaders and respected traditional rulers, to prevail on both parties to shift grounds and find a middle ground for an amicable agreement.
He noted that Nigerian students had remained at the receiving end of each academic strike.
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