The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), has commenced an indefinite strike over the Federal Government’s inability to meet up with various agreements entered with the union.
ASUU had declared a two-week warning strike on March 9, 2020, due to skeletal and actual non-implementation of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and Memoranda of Action (MoA) .
The agreements range from the non-funding of public universities and non-payment of outstanding balance of arrears of Earned Academic allowance.
Others are salary shortfalls, underfunding and proliferation of state universities, NUPEMCO, visitation panels, renegotiation of 2009 agreement and IPPIS.
Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, ASUU President, announced the decision during a news conference at the end of an emergency National Executive Council (NEC) meeting on Monday in Abuja.
Ogunyemi said that it was difficult for NEC to take some painful decisions at the meeting.
According to Ogunyemi, based on the review of reports from ASUU leadership’s engagement with government, the NEC concluded that government had failed to satisfactorily address the outstanding issues raised in the FGN-ASUU 2019 Memorandum of Action.
“Government has also ignored the objections of ASUU against the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS).
“Consequently, NEC resolved to embark on a total, comprehensive and indefinite strike beginning Monday, 23rd March, 2020 until the issues are satisfactorily resolved,” he said.
He explained that NEC had observed that the document being put together by government for ensuring sustainable funding of education in Nigeria did not, in anyway, refer to the 2019 FG-ASUU MoA.
Ogunyemi said that ASUU wanted a clear timeline for the phased release of the outstanding balance of about N1.1 tr. based on the 2013 Memorandum of Understanding of government and ASUU.
He added that ASUU would align forces with the labour movement, professional bodies, students, among others, to ensure that the dignity of scholars was not totally eroded in Nigeria. (NAN)
Edited By: Fela Fashoro and Ephraims Sheyin
Dabiri-Erewa hails Nigerian Ezeajughi’s re-election as UK Mayor, Ajagba’s United States boxing victory
Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), has congratulated Nigerian-born scientist, Ernest Ezeajughi, who was elected to serve a second term as the Mayor of Brent.
She also commended Nigerian-born Boxer, Efe Ajagba for defeating his American opponent, Jonnie Rice, in a keenly contested bout on Saturday night at the Bubble in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The congratulatory messages were contained in two separate statements issued on Sunday by NIDCOM Head of Media and Public Relations, Abdur-Rahman Balogun in Abuja.
Dabiri-Erewa said the re-election of Councillor Ezeajughi, was a testimony to his outstanding performance during his first term, which earned him the respect of the people.
She advised him to continue to impact positively on the people, especially those who gave him the mandate, by living up to their expectations.
The NiDCOM boss urged other Nigerians living abroad to emulate the friendly disposition of Ezeajughi that endeared him to the people outside the shores of Nigeria.
The re-election followed the first ever virtual Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the council.
Ezeajughi was first elected Mayor in 2019 and had gone about discharging his duties with gusto.
Unfortunately, due to the Coronavirus pandemic, he has had to cut back on his outings this year but in recognition of his sterling work, the council voted to return him to office for another year.
The event was attended by councillors from across the borough and it also confirmed that Councillor Lia Colacicco, who represents Mapesbury ward, would continue as deputy mayor.
In a related development, the NiDCOM boss also hailed Nigerian-born boxer, Efe Ajagba for defeating his American opponent Jonnie Rice.
She said that the victory over the American boxer was not only a thing of pride to Nigerians, but to Africa as a whole.
“I congratulate you on this wonderful feat, for winning this tensed but historical fight.
“We are truly proud of you and urge you to continue to use your professional prowess to extol the virtues of Nigerian heritage.
“Your shinning beacon serves as inspiration to the youths of Nigeria.
“Your victory is also a testimony to the fact that Nigerians are great people, contributing in many ways to the development of the country and the continent as a whole,” Dabiri-Erewa stated.
She noted with satisfaction that in spite of the challenges being faced by the 26 years old Ajagba in his career, he had remained determined, focused and did not allow that to lure him into any form of criminality or depression.
This is only the second time Ajagba would be winning a fight via a 10-round unanimous decision.
While Ajagba has had it ‘easier’ in most of his other fights, he was pushed to the limits against Rice; claiming a ten-round unanimous decision over the 33-year-old American boxer.
As reported by Boxing Scene, Judge Max DeLuca had the bout 98-92, while judges Adalaide Byrd and Dave Moretti scored it 99-91 in favour of Ajagba.
This is the second time Ajagba would be winning a fight via unanimous decision, haven knocked down all his previous challengers.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Felix Ajide
Schools resumption: Lalong urges parents to teach children COVID-19 safety protocols
Gov. Simon Lalong of Plateau has urged parents in the state to teach their children the safety protocols against COVID-19, preparatory to resumption of schools targeted for end of October.
Lalong had in a broadcast to the people of the state said schools would resume October ending, but was not definite on the date.
He made the call on Sunday at a send off Church mass for the outgoing Prior Provincial of the Catholic Church Order of St. Augustine in Nigeria, Rev. Fr. John Abubakar, at the St. Monica’s Parish Rantya, Jos.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that St Augustinians in the Catholic Church were accredited with parish and pastoral work, scientific study, teaching and missions, among others.
The governor said he made the call because children easily emulated what parents did, more than instructions given to them elsewhere.
Besides, he said, children were most vulnerable to the disease and must be protected, first by the parents.
“I appeal to parents to comply with COVID-19 protocols for the children to emulate, they are most vulnerable because they move around more than us.
“It is the toughest decision we will make to allow innocent children to return to school, ” he said.
Lalong explained that Plateau was now an epicenter of COVID-19 pandemic resulting from the large number of people tested daily in its three testing centres.
“In the 36 states, we are the third in terms of testing capacity and recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for doing well.
“We test 500 people to 700 people daily, we want everyone to know their health status for appropriate action,” he said.
He commended the outgoing Prior Provincial for his diligence in service during his tenure for eight years and prayed for God’s blessings on him.
“In addition to establishing a new secondary school here, he told me he was lobbying for the establishment of an Augustinian University in Plateau,” he said.
The governor expressed optimism that the university would be a reality even in his absence, because of the foundation he had laid for the process.
He thanked the Prior Provincial for his contributions to the Catholic Church and Plateau, expressing the desire that his successor would consolidate on his achievements for greater successes.
Delivering the homily titled: ` God’s Unmerited Love’, Abubakar urged the congregation to focus on their gifts and talents and desist from comparing their lives with other people.
“We should seize opportunity to be impactful with our talents and gifts and stop the mistake of comparing yourselves with others. How God chooses to operate is up to him,”he said.
He said people were appreciated when they left an office because of the value they have added to lives.
Abubakar appreciated the Plateau Government and people of the state for the love they showered on him during his stay, saying their cooperation made his work easy while urging them to extend such gesture to his successor.
Edited By: Emmanuel Nwoye and Abdullahi Yusuf
Obaseki’s reelection is triumph of democracy – Gov. Diri
Gov. Douye Diri of Bayelsa has congratulated his Edo counterpart, Mr Godwin Obaseki, on his re-election, describing the victory as triumph of democracy in the state.
Diri said Obaseki’s resounding victory as declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), was a triumph for democracy and, indeed, the people of Edo .
The governor, in a statement issued to the News Agency of Nigeria , on Sunday by his Acting Chief Press Secretary, Mr Daniel Alabrah, observed that people’s power, as expressed in Saturday’s governorship election in Edo remained the most potent force in any democracy.
He, therefore, commended the electoral umpire for upholding the will of the Edo people in spite of reported pressure to unduly influence the outcome of the poll.
The governor, noted that Obaseki’s re-election would give greater impetus to development of the state as he remained the most popular choice of the people.
“This victory belongs to Edo people, who have proved they can make their votes count. People’s power in any democracy is the most potent force.
“I, therefore, congratulate my brother and colleague, Obaseki, on his resounding victory as declared by INEC.
“His re-election has shown and proven that he is, indeed, a man of the people. So, I urge him to be magnanimous in victory.
“I also commend INEC, for upholding democracy and for allowing the will of Edo people to prevail.
“Democracy in Nigeria will be strengthened when democratic institutions play their stipulated roles without undue interference,” he said.
The Bayelsa governor further congratulated the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), for securing yet another heartwarming victory in Edo.
He said that he was particularly delighted that all the states in the South-South region now belonged to the PDP family.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Donald Ugwu
Edo Guber: IPAC commends Buhari, INEC, security agencies over peaceful poll
IPAC described the poll and its outcome as exemplary and recommended the same for the Ondo governorship poll coming up on Oct.10.
The commendation was made by IPAC Chairman, Mr Tade Ademola, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos on Sunday.
Ademola said that the level playing ground allowed by the President and INEC had further deepened Nigeria’s democracy.
Ademola, who is also the Chairman, Alliance for Social Democrats (ASD) in Lagos State, urged that the standard already built in Edo poll should not be compromised in the forthcoming Ondo governorship election on Oct. 31.
“The truth about Edo election is that the people were determined, and that was what won the election. If people are determined everywhere and are not complacent, we will get there.
“It is better this time around, but it can be improved upon. We should be able by now to be conducting our election online.
“In the coming Ondo election, I hope they will not change style and that there will be a level playing ground for all so that only the peoples’ will will prevail.
“If the same template as used in Edo, is used in Ondo election, it will be a progress in the nation’s electoral system.
“Generally, this election was peaceful and fair as we could see. We cannot say 100 per cent perfect, but it was better than what we had in Kogi and Bayelsa,” Ademola said.
According to him, though there are areas to improve upon, the relatively peaceful and credible Edo election is a milestone in the history of elections in recent time.
He said that INEC could improve on timeliness of staff and materials at polling units.
Obaseki polled a total of 307,955 votes to defeat the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu who scored 223,619.
Edited By: Emmanuel Nwoye/Bayo Sekoni