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ASUU: Confusion As Universities Set To Lose Sessions, Admission Seekers Stranded

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ASUU: Confusion As Universities Set To Lose Sessions, Admission Seekers Stranded

ASUU: Confusion mounts as universities are set to lose sessions, admission seekers stranded.

News ToGo learnt that Seven months after the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, embarked on strike, the end is not in sight.

The industrial action, which the union usually reviewed on a monthly basis, is now indefinite, with both parties not ready to shift ground.

It was reported that the development has brought confusion into the education system with a set of students, whose admission processes were concluded last year, unable to resume, whereas another set of students sat for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME, this year, 2022.

With the development, two sets of new students, 2021 and 2022 are now waiting for resumption of their academic journey in some of the universities.

According to a university worker, “as it stands now, we have two sets of students ready to resume academic session. Those admitted in 2021 were to resume after the second semester examination early this year, 2022, but their dreams were cut short by the strike, Daily Post reports.

“Now, another set of students sat for the UTME this year, 2022, waiting for admission processes.

“You know that universities have been trying hard to recover from the COVID-19 lockdown, during which schools were shut down, and now we have this prolonged ASUU strike. I really don’t know how this would be handled.”

ASUU has been on strike since February 2022 over the Federal Government’s inability to meet a 2009 agreement reached with the union.

In the agreement, ASUU is asking for funds for the revitalization of universities, and payment of backlog of salaries, among others.

Since the strike, representatives of the government and the academic body had met severally to negotiate the impasse, but such meetings ended in a deadlock.

Amid the breakdown of negotiations, the Federal Government had invoked the no-work-no-pay rule against ASUU members, which now appears to be the major clog in the wheel of dialogue between both parties.

Reacting to the development, a lecturer with the Department of Curriculum and Teaching of Calabar, UNICAL, said ASUU may not engage the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government in negotiations until the next dispensation.

The lecturer, Okey Samson, recounted how his colleagues have been suffering and some are dead due to the economic hardship caused by the lingering strike.

Speaking on the issue, he said: “ASUU members won’t negotiate with any government representative again until a new government comes in. When a new government comes in place, ASUU will now start engaging the government.

“In my last branch congress, our chairman said those who can travel to the village should go and farm. My head of department is into fishery now in Calabar. To be honest with you, the hardship lecturers are facing is something else; my interest in this job has waned. You see a professor trekking, you can’t knock on the door of a professor and demand N500,000, but that is what people take to clubs here in Abuja.

“There should be hope in this system; look at the value of naira now. It is so high. For anything meaningful to be achieved, there must be a sacrifice. ASUU should be applauded. It’s only the earned academic allowances which are statutory and increments that have a direct bearing on members; every other thing does not. If you talk about revitalization funds, it’s in the interest of students.

“I teach some faculty courses, and I pity students due to where to sit, no public address system; you will have to shout. ASUU is not unreasonable; it’s fighting for the students.

“ASUU is ready to consider, the body had negotiated a 180 percent increment, but the federal government at some point was ready to pay 100 percent, but things changed. They will pay ASUU the accumulated earned allowance after the meeting, earmarking the meeting of 100 percent increment, paying backlog of salaries, paying at least 50 percent of earned academic arrears and money sunk into revitalization, which no member would benefit from, but we don’t know what changed that government is no longer interested.

“For the middle ground, they must pay that salary they have refused to pay; the government quoted international labour law, but what about human rights, which is fundamental?

“No refinery in Nigeria is working, but their workers have been receiving heavy salaries; their pay package is better than what they are paying ASUU. Government must pay the salaries owed ASUU members, implement the new salary scale of at least 100 percent increment, pay 50 percent of the old earned academic arrears, and do the revitalization as they can before universities open. If the government refuses, universities will not open, lecturers have died, and others will also die.”

The lecturer insisted that the Federal Government is not interested in meeting the demands of ASUU.

He stressed that the impasse would have been resolved if the government was interested in meeting the demands of ASUU.

“Government is not interested in ASUU’s demand because it has no direct bearing on them. When the aviation union went on strike, they resolved their issues because they don’t travel via road. When electricity workers shut down the power grid for one day, they resolve the problem because it directly affects them.

“Tell me one public office holder whose son or daughter is schooling in a federal or state university in Nigeria, the ones in Nigeria are in private universities. This government appears insensitive; they don’t care.

“Hold the president responsible, Ngige, Adamu Adamu are all answerable to him. During the birthday of Bishop Kukah, former President Goodluck Jonathan shared an experience where he set up a committee and it appeared things were not working and he stepped in and invited the minister of Finance and others, the strike that lasted for four months then was resolved that night.”

”But, I don’t know if Buhari is reasoning well, even as ASUU is saying they are not ready to meet with anybody; let the president as a father step in and resolve the issue. My colleagues don’t have food; they don’t have Garri to sip.”

Speaking on the issue, ASUU branch Chairman in UNICAL, Edor Edor, said the body is open to negotiation with the Federal Government.

Edor said the academic body would call off whenever the government is ready to implement the report of Professor Briggs.

“We are open to negotiations with the Federal Government of Nigeria, and whenever the government deems it fit to invite ASUU for negotiation, we will attend the meeting and see how to resolve the lingering issues.

“It will be suspended as soon as the government implements the professor Briggs report,” he said.

The branch Chairman also stressed that the Buhari-led government should be held responsible for the lingering strike.

“The president, Minister of Labour and Employment, and the Minister of Education are all government officials representing the Nigerian people. The president was voted in by the Nigerian people and is holding the Nigerian people’s mandate.

“He appointed the Ministers of Labour and Employment and Education to assist in the discharge of the responsibility of governance, so we are holding the government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria responsible, we are not personalizing this action.

“We can’t hold Ngige, Adamu Adamu responsible, but we are holding the Federal Government-led by Muhammadu Buhari responsible,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Federal Government has said it agreed for a 23 percent increment in the salary of the university workers, a condition rejected by ASUU.

As a way of re-opening discussion, the government, on Tuesday, at a meeting with pro-chancellors and vice-chancellors of universities, constituted a 14-member committee, to among others, review its decision not to pay the striking lecturers for the period they have been at home and other contending issues.

It is left to be seen what would come out of the committee.

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Confusion In Edo As Two Contenders Emerge APC Guber Candidates

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Confusion In Edo As Two Contenders Emerge APC Guber Candidates

Controversy brewed yesterday as two governorship candidates emerged winners of the All Progressives Congress (APC) ticket from parallel primaries conducted ahead of the September 21 governorship election in the state.

News ToGo reports that a member of the House of Representatives, Dennis Idahosa, was initially declared the winner by the chairman of the APC Primary Election Committee, Governor Hope Uzodimma, at Protea Hotel. However, at the residence of Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, Senator Monday Okpephole was announced as the winner by the Returning Officer for the election, Dr. Stanley Ugboaje.

In one of the primaries supervised by Uzodimma, Idahosa secured victory with 40,453 votes. Conversely, Okpepholo emerged triumphant in the parallel primary overseen by Dr. Ugboaje, garnering 12,145 votes.

Announcing the results, Uzodimma affirmed the peaceful conduct of the exercise across the state’s 18 local government areas and 192 wards. He declared, “Dennis Idahosa, having scored the highest votes cast, is hereby declared winner of the primary and returned as the candidate of the party.”

In the second primary, Dr. Stanley Ugboaje announced Okpepholo as the winner with 12,145 votes, while Idahosa secured 5,536 votes to emerge second.

Prior to the conclusion of the declaration at Lushville Hotel and Suite, suspected thugs disrupted the process, compelling the officials to relocate to Pastor Ize-Iyamu’s residence. Journalists covering the event were assaulted, and their equipment damaged. Despite the presence of the State Commissioner of Police, Funsho Adeboye, the disruption persisted.

Meanwhile, the APC has urged the public to disregard any unauthorized announcement of the primary election result. National Publicity Secretary of the party, Felix Morka, emphasized that only the Governor Hope Uzodinma-led Edo State APC Governorship Primary Election Committee is authorized to undertake the final collation and announcement of results.

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LP Crisis: Peter Obi Speaks After Abure Was Implicated In N3.5B Saga, Reveals Next Action

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LP Crisis: Peter Obi Speaks After Abure Was Implicated In N3.5B Saga, Reveals Next Action

Labour Party’s presidential candidate for the 2023 general elections, Peter Obi, announced the engagement of an external auditor to scrutinize the party’s finances.

News ToGo reports that this follows allegations of misappropriation made by Oluchi Opara, the party’s national treasurer, who accused Julius Abure, the national chairman, of mishandling N3.5 billion. Responding to these accusations, the party suspended Opara, citing external influences seeking to harm the LP. Abure pledged legal action against Opara for defamation.

Addressing the issue in a press conference on Thursday, Obi stated, “We will account for everything now that we have an independent person who will tell us which way forward.” Accompanied by Aisha Yesufu, a member of his 2023 campaign team, Obi clarified, “I’m not involved in the party’s management and the campaign accounts.”

He assured transparency in handling funds received during the election and called on the public to provide any information on fund disbursement. Obi emphasized the importance of accountability in the party’s financial affairs moving forward.

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KARMA: Alleged APC’s Memo Asking Police To Grab, Silence 16 Politicians In Kano Leaks (FULL LIST)

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KARMA: Alleged APC's Memo Asking Police To Grab, Silence 16 Politicians In Kano Leaks (FULL LIST)

A leaked memo from the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kano State has surfaced, revealing the party’s attempt to engage the Nigeria Police Force to apprehend and silence 16 prominent individuals in the state allegedly for inciting the public against the party through social media posts.

News ToGo learned that the letter, dated January 5, 2024, and signed by the State Secretary of the APC, Ibrahim Zakari, urged the Nigerian Police Force to arrest the identified individuals and institute legal proceedings against them based on directives provided by the party.

In the memo, the APC expressed confidence in the victory of its gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna, in the state’s gubernatorial election held in March 2023. Consequently, the party authorized the Nigeria Police Force to treat the letter as official instructions.

The letter states: “On behalf of the Kano State APC Chairman, we request that the individuals listed in the table below be traced and arrested immediately after the Supreme Court’s verdict on Friday, January, 12″ 2024, which will declare Dr. Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna as winner.

“We also request that your department should as a matter of urgency, file charges and accuse them of using the social media in uttering unguarded statements capable of promoting violence and inciting people against the APC government. We have enough record of such posts. The name of the court you should convey their cases will be sent to you in due time. Please let us know what it will take.”

The list of individuals to be apprehended includes:

  1. Salisu Yahaya Hotoro
  2. Aliyu Dahiru Aliyu
  3. Kabiru Sa’idu Dakata
  4. Sunusi Bature Dawakin Tofa
  5. Nasiru Zango
  6. Sufyan Safjamil Kabo
  7. Hajiya A’in Jafaru Darmanawa
  8. Alhajiji Nagoda Hon, Ibrahim Zakari
  9. Ibrahim Zakari Zawaciki
  10. Sani Musa Danja
  11. Hon. Auwalu Lawan Aranposu
  12. Sunusi Osca
  13. Kwankwason Dakata
  14. Ishak Abdul
  15. Aminu Abdullahi Kima
  16. Habu Tabule

The party reportedly promised to send the home and office addresses of the listed persons alongside another list.

The Supreme Court recently overturned the judgments of the election tribunal and Court of Appeal, affirming Governor Kabir Yusuf as the duly elected governor of Kano State. Gawuna, who had initially won at the tribunal and the Appeal Court contested Governor Yusuf’s victory over alleged malpractices.

Gawuna, in response to the Supreme Court’s verdict, expressed acceptance, stating, “The Supreme Court judgment is God’s decision, saying he had accepted it in good faith.”

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