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FG Lied, We Didn’t Reach Agreement To Suspend Strike, Says ASUU

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has denied that it reached an agreement with the federal government to suspend its ongoing strike on December 9, 2020.

The Union insisted that contrary to insinuation to that effect, there was never an understanding with the government that it would suspend the over 9 months old action on the said date.

President of ASUU, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi in a statement made available to newsmen Wednesday night, said ASUU representatives do not have the powers to suspend or call off industrial action but must follow due process which includes transmitting the outcome of negotiations to members and National Executive Council (NEC) of ASUU for further deliberations and actions.

While noting that ASUU was willing to cooperate with concerned authorities to ensure suspension of the strike once the welfare and wellbeing of ASUU members and survival of public universities were sufficiently guaranteed, he said It was a needless crisis which had happened because the government consistently failed to faithfully implement the Agreements it freely signed with the union.

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The leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has been inundated with enquiries on why the ongoing strike action has not been suspended. This was sequel to the widely reported claims by some government agents that all the demands of ASUU have been met and that the union agreed to suspend the strike action today, 9th December 2020. Nothing can be farther from the truth!

“To put the records straight, the Principal Officers and Trustees who constitute the core of representatives of ASUU at negotiation meetings with the government are not constitutionally empowered to suspend any strike action. Whatever comes out of an engagement with agents of the government is an offer that must be taken back to the branches through the various organs of the union”.

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“Views and perspectives on offers by governments are aggregated and presented to government agents as counter-offers. This trade union strategy of offer and counter-offer is continually deployed until the National Executive Council (NEC) of ASUU – consisting of all recognised chairpersons – finally approves what it considers an acceptable offer from the government. It is only then that any strike action by ASUU can be suspended”.

“The ASUU leadership did not reach any understanding with the government to suspend the strike on 9th December 2020 and there is nothing in the government offer of 27th November 2020 to suggest that conclusion as allegedly claimed by the Minister of Labour and Employment.

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“The leadership of ASUU has consistently stated at every meeting with high ranking government officials that the union’s representatives have no mandate to take the final decision on any strike action by the union. All the leadership does is to present government offers through its organs, and that we have done faithfully in the current situation.

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“ASUU members, as stakeholders in the Nigerian University System, are equally worried and embarrassed that those in the position of authority, over the years, displayed seeming indifference to the rot and decay in Nigeria’s public universities. We think it is not too late to do a rethink. We believe if there is the will, there will be away.”

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Education

Check out how Nasarawa Legislature Uncovers Alleged Fraud In Education Sector, Begin Immediate Investigation

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The Speaker of the State House of  Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ibrahim Balarabe Abdullahi
Check out how Nasarawa Legislature Uncovers Alleged Fraud In Education Sector, Begin Immediate Investigation
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In a bid to ensure equitable distributions of resources to the State population, The Nasarawa State House of Assembly that is entrusted with responsibility of overseeing the activities of ministries, department and agencies (MDA’s) as well ensure check and balance has ordered its  Committee on Education, Science and Technology to commence immediate investigate into the purported employment of 366 secondary school teachers by the office of the state Accountant General without following due process.

Reacting to the development, Rt. Hon Ibrahim Balarabe Abdullahi, Speaker of the House gave the directive after Hon Daniel Ogazi, the Chairman, House Committee on Education,  Science and Technology raised the issue on the Matters of public interest during  the House proceedings on Monday in Lafia, State capital.

Rt. Hon. Alhaji Ibrahim Balarabe Abdullahi, Nasarawa State House Assembly Speaker

Rt. Hon. Alhaji Ibrahim Balarabe Abdullahi, Nasarawa State House Assembly Speaker

The Speaker said thorough investigation into the alleged employment of teachers would enable the House get more facts on true position of the matter.

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” I want to appreciate Hon Daniel Ogazi for bringing this matter of public importance. This House will not fold its hands on matter of this magnitude.

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” It is in view of this that I direct that the House Committee on Education, Science and Technology to carry out thorough investigation .

“You are to invite all those involved for questioning and report back to the House within three weeks, ” he said.

On his part,  Hon Mohammed Omadefu ( APC- Keana), Hon John Osewu (APC- Doma South), and Hon Mohammed Muluku ( APC- Nassarawa Eggon East) constituencies all called for sincere investigation into the matter as finally get to root of the whole drama.

Earlier, Hon Daniel Ogazi, the Chairman, House Committee on Education, Science and Technology while raising the matter said that the purported employment emanated from the office of the state Accountant  General.

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” During our recess, we did not go to sleep. We have carried out our oversight functions and it is on this note that we discovered this purported employment of 366 secondary school teachers.

“Before there should be any employment of teachers, advertisement of vacancies where applicants will apply and screen for the job needed to be done through the State Teachers Service Commission TSC ”

“Even at this moment, there is no advertisement of vacancies but there was employment of 366 secondary  school teachers in the state.

” We have some documents on the purported employment, ” the said

Ogazi told the House that there was no provision in the 2021 budget for the employment of 366 secondary school teachers and wondered why there was such employment without due process.

Meanwhile, The House also deliberated on report of the joint Committee on Housing and Environment/ Health on a Bill for a Law to Establish the Nasarawa State Waste Management and Sanitation Authority and for Connected Matters.

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Hon Daniel Ogazi, the Deputy Majority Leader of the House moved a motion for the adoption of the report which was seconded by Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba, the Deputy Minority Leader of the House.

Chairman House Committee on Education and member representing Kokona constituency Hon Daniel Oga Ogazi

Chairman House Committee on Education, Hon Daniel Oga Ogazi

The  speaker slated Aug.10 for the third reading of the bill.

The House also passed into second reading a Bill for a Law to Establish the Nasarawa State Urban and Regional Planning Board and for Other Purposes Connected Therewith after Hon Daniel Ogazi, moved a motion for the bill to scale second reading which was seconded by Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba.

Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba

Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba

The speaker committed the bill to the House Committee on Urban Development to work on it and report back to the House on Wednesday, Aug 4.

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Education

How We Survive Covid-19 Challenges – School Proprietor

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COVID-19
How We Survive Covid-19 Challenges - School Proprietor
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By Sadiq Abubakar, Abuja. 

A school proprietor in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) has described their journey through COVID-19 as a hard time to owners, students, teachers and parents.

Emmanuel Ozigi, the proprietor of New Beacon International School disclosed this while speaking to journalists on the side of the Graduation/Award ceremony held by the school weekend.

“Coping with COVID has not been easy. Part of the coping strategies which we expected that there should be palliative from governments. The private institutions should be supported,” he said.

He called on the federal government and the FCT administration to help private schools go through the challenges of COVID-19 as it has done to other private entities.

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Ozigi said, although some initiatives had been taken during the peak of the pandemic, many have failed to get access to the palliatives provided.

“I don’t think that the initiative has worked because some of us have not been able to access some of those palliatives from the Federal Government.

“However, on our own as directors of the school and other partners, we put funds together to see how we can run the school without stopping.

“Even though with COVID, you would be surprised that we are still paying teachers. We paid them up to a certain level that we now have to pay them half salary, then eventually there was a lift in September.

COVID-19

COVID-19

“So, we did not allow them to go because we want to retain. So we did not stop or sack anyone or terminate any appointment. And they are happy for the fact that it did not affect our calendar because we have a uniform calendar in FCT and at the same time,” he said.

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Education

Jubilations In Obi 11 As Lawmaker Zhekaba Dole Out Over 1Million Naira Scholarship Grants for Over 140 Students

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Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba
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By Our Reporter, Lafia.

Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba, has advised students studying at various higher institutions of learning in the country to take their studies more serious in order to come out with good grade.

Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba

Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba

The lawmaker made the assertion when he granted scholarship to over 140 students across his constituent in first batch.

Hon. Luka Iliya Zhekaba (PDP), who double as Chairman, House Committee on Environment made the  disbursement on Saturday in his constituency office Duduguru, Obi Local Government Area of the State.

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The scholarship was tagged ” Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba Scholarship 2021/ 2022″.

The lawmaker noted that his leadership will continue to identify with youths, women and vulnerable people in the society. He said 200 more students have been shortlisted for second batch in October

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The lawmaker is also the House deputy minority leader said the gesture was borne out of his desire to reduce the burden of school fees on parents/guardians for improved standard of education.

Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba presenting cash of money as grants to some students and beneficiaries

Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba presenting cash of money as grants to some students and beneficiaries

According to him, This is just a token from me to you to ameliorate  your academic burdens.

” Education  is the bed rock of every society, that is why upon my assumption into office as member,  I have left no stone unturned in pursuance of educational aspirations and yearnings of my constituents.

” Today, I am giving the sum of N10,000 each to students from 400 level  and above and HND 11 who are mostly final year students.

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” Whereas all other level students will receive cash alert of N5,000 each on a flat rate,” he said.

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Zhekaba urged the students to desist from engaging in illicit social Vices such as cultism, drug abuse, sexual abuse , examination malpractices among other negative acts.

He  urged the beneficiaries to use the money for the purpose it was meant for.

He has also urged the beneficiaries to be of good conducts and take their studies with all seriousness in order to excel in their academic pursuits.

The lawmaker urged those students who could not see their names in the first batch to be patient while disclosing that 200 students are to benefit in the second batch of his scholarship coming up by October 2021.

Hon. Zhekaba also commended the bursary committee for a job well done and  applauded party stakeholders and other people of his constituency of their support at all times.

The lawmaker has assured of quality representation at the state legislature in order to better the standard of living of the people of his constituency and the state at large.

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In his keynote address, Mr Obadiah Illah, Lecturer, Department of Sociology, Isah Mustapha Agwai 1 Polytechnic, Laifa commended the lawmaker for disbursing scholarship to the students of his constituency.

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Illah, who spoke on the topic ” Education in Migili Land : Motivated Enrollment for a Paradigm Shift”  said that education is key to development while urging all to embrace education for the overall development of Migili nation, the state and Nigeria at large.

The students and beneficiaries of the grants in a joyous mode towards appreciating Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba

The students and beneficiaries of the grants in a joyous mode towards appreciating Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba

The academic Don has urged parents/ guardians to send their children/ wards to school considering the importance of education to  societal development.

Earlier, Mr Ashikpo Joseph, the Chairman of the Bursary committee said that the beneficiaries have been screened and qualified for the bursary allowance.

Responding on behalf  of the students, Mr Azige Peter, President, National Association of Koro Students ( NAKS) , Nasarawa State University, Keffi appreciated the lawmaker for the gesture and prayed God to bless him abundantly.

Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba

Member representing Obi 11 constituency in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon Luka Iliya Zhekaba

It would be reported that the occasion was well attended by politicians, academicians among other well wishers including Mr Ogu Awotu, the Chairman of PDP Obi Local Government Area of the State.

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