ASUU Flays Removal Of VCs
The Academic Staff Union
of Universities (ASUU), has condemned the recent removal of Vice Chancellors of 12 universities by the Federal Government and the appointment of new ones to replace them, saying, the action of government undermines the autonomy of the universities.
The Zonal Coordinator of ASUU, Port Harcourt Zone, Prof. Beke Sese, who made the condemnation while addressing newsmen in Yenagoa recently said it was the responsibilities of the Governing Councils of the universities to appoint Vice Chancellors and inform the Visitor, as clearly spelt out in the Universities (Miscellaneous) Provisions Amendment Act 2003, 4(b).
He also noted that the Federal Government goofed by recently dissolving the Governing Councils of the University of Port Harcourt and Obafemi Awolowo University.
ASUU equally called on the Federal Government to exempt universities from the implementation of the Treasury Single Account (TSA), considering the peculiarities of the tertiary institutions, stressing that “it undermines the autonomy of universities and makes it extremely difficult for them to discharge their core responsibilities of teaching, research and community services”.
According to him, the dynamic nature of universities and the fluidity of their programmes make the TSA impractical in universities.
The ASUU Zonal Coordinator also condemned the discrepancy in the retirement age of academics on professional cadre, as the Pension Reform Act excludes Associate Professors from its definition of professional cadre by restricting the provision only to the retirement of Professors.
He decried a situation where Professors who are still in the Contributory Pension Scheme had been forced to retire earlier than agreed and also denied their retirement benefits.
He also expressed dismay over non-payment of salaries of its members and the shortfall in their salaries since December 2015, and called on relevant authorities to address this problem.
“Staff salaries are not paid in time and not paid fully and correctly. Inspite of the assurances of government to address this anomaly, the situation has remained sadly unchanged with universities unable to pay salaries fully to July 2016,” he said.
He singled out the Niger Delta University (NDU), where he said ASUU members were still being owed four months salary arrears even after recently suspending its four-month strike, saying, this has become an undesirable trend in several universities across the country.
To this end, Sese called on the Federal Government to implement the 2009 Agreement it entered with ASUU without further delay, adding that the government had over the years breached the agreement including the payment of Earned Academic Allowances (EAA), among others.
‘Diri Met Criteria For Guber Polls’
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governorship Screening Committee for Bayelsa State has screened and cleared Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, for the November 11, 2023 governorship election in the state.
The Tide learnt that the screening exercise took place at the party’s headquarters in Abuja.
Report states that Diri, who is the incumbent Governor of the oil-rich state, is the lone aspirant from the party that picked the PDP nomination and expression of interest forms for the November polls.
Chairman of the screening committee and Edo State Deputy Governor, Comrade Philip Shaibu, said the panel screened Governor Diri in line with guidelines of the party and as stipulated in the Electoral Law.
Shaibu said the Bayelsa helmsman met all the requirements of the party for the election.
“We have checked the documents of Governor Douye Diri and have also interviewed him. Having satisfied our question-and-answer process, we discovered that he is not only worthy to contest the election but also have no encumbrances as far as his documents are concerned.
“Regardless of the fact that he is the incumbent Governor, and having been a Senator of the Federal Republic, we still went through his documents page by page to ensure that there is nothing that is contrary to the Electoral Law.
“Having met all the conditions and in line with the process, you have been cleared by the committee. We wish you well in the forthcoming election in Bayelsa State.
“We know you have performed well as governor and by the grace of God, you will continue with the good work you have started after the election to make Bayelsa the state that Bayelsans dream to have”, the Committee said.
By: Ariwera Ibibo-Howells,
Small Claims Court Commences Sitting In Bayelsa
The Bayelsa State Judiciary under the leadership of Hon. Justice M. A. Ayemieye, the Ag. Chief Judge, has established the Small Claims Court in the state.
The Tide reports that the Small Claims Court has since commenced sitting from the 20th of March, at the State Multi-door Court House, High Court Complex, Ovom, and at the Hon. Justice Koripamo David Ungbuku High Court complex, Onopa, Yenagoa, the state capital.
The Tide further gathered that the court is saddled with the responsibility of claim for money in any debt recovery action with value not exceeding N5,000,000.00, and can be filed at the Small Claims Court Registry located at the Hon. Justice Koripamo David Ungbuku High Court complex.
A statement issued by Mr. Julius Lambert Nyananyo, Head, Media and Information Department of the state Judiciary for and onbehalf of the Chief Registrar, Bayelsa State Judiciary (High Court) said the Small Claims Court is an innovation in the Nigeria legal system, with a view to helping small business operators recover debt owed for goods supplied.
The statement reads in part: “The small claims court will assist business men and it does not have to go through litigation system that may take longer time to reach a final decision.
“The State Judiciary had earlier inaugurated the Management Committee on the 4th of January, 2023 for effective take off of the Small Claims Court”.
The Head, Media and Information of the State Judiciary also noted in his statement that the Small Claims Court is very affordable and easy to use, hence one does not need to have a lawyer to represent him or file his matter.
“An individual, partnership, association or corporation can use a small claims court as cases are speedily dispensed. However, claimants and defendants must reside and do business in Bayelsa State”, he said.
Meanwhile, Mr Nyananyo aslo called on the attention of legal practitioners and interested members of the public to the fact that handbooks and practice directions were also available at the state judiciary and online at the judiciary website: bayelsastatejudiciary.gov.ng.
The statement urged the public to take advantage of the Small Claims Court.
By: Ariwera Ibibo-Howells,
Ex-Uniuyo VC’s Wife Emerges First Female CIPM Chairman In A’Ibom
Wife of a former Vice-Chancellor of University of Uyo, Dr Rosalyn Essien, has been elected as the first female Chairman of Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPM) in Akwa Ibom State.
The Tide’s source reports that Essien was elected unopposed at the institute’s Annual General Meeting (AGM), with the theme: “The Human Resources Methods of The Master,” in Uyo.
Essien, who holds B.A (Hons.) in English Language degree from University of Uyo, and Master and Doctoral degrees, is a seasoned bureaucrat with interest in human resources management.
Aside going through various cadres within the Akwa Ibom civil service, she had also attended courses in conflict management in some countries, including South Africa, Britain and United States of America.
In her acceptance speech, Essien said her position as CIPM Vice-Chairman in the last two years had given her the opportunity of fully understanding the dynamics and workings of the institute.
According to her, her emergence as Chairman is a call to duty.
“Leadership is all about shared vision and responsibility. I want to assure you that during my tenure, I intend to build on the achievements of my predecessor”, she said.
Also speaking, the immediate past Chairman of the institute, Mr Anthony Isonguyo, highlighted his achievements to include: training of members, advocacy through courtesy calls/visits to some notable firms in the state.
He said the immediate past executives, under his leadership, had also reached out to some organisations for training of their workforce, while they had successfully completed training for other firms.
In his goodwill message, CIPM National President, Mr Mojid Olusegun, said the institute would remain a strong voice in the bargaining for a new minimum wage from the Federal Government.
Olusegun, who was represented by the South-South Zonal Vice-President, Mr Samuel Omeregun, said that the institute would continue to deliver effective human resources services as its core mandate.
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