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FG, ASUU Set to Resume Negotiations to End Strike

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Strong indications emerged at the weekend that the federal government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) will soon resume negotiations to end the four-month strike by lecturers.

We investigations revealed that both sides are making moves to restart discussions that were abandoned following the disagreement over the introduction of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel and Information System (IPPIS) in the university system and subsequent stoppage of salaries of non-compliant ASUU members.

ASUU has also said its alternative payment platform, University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS), was ready for verification and validation by agencies of the federal government.

While the ASUU President, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, told us that the weekend that the union had met with the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, to help facilitate resumption of talks with the federal government on the lecturers’ grievances, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, also confirmed to us that he was set to invite the union to resume talks.

Ogunyemi said ASUU was ready to resume negotiations but an invitation had not been extended to it.

“Yes, we had a discussion with the minister of education recently and we are hoping that he would provide a platform for further discussions with the government. So, for now, we are in touch with the minister of education only that we have not specified the time for the resumption of negotiations. We will be resuming talks as soon as they call us,” he stated.

The ASUU president listed the five outstanding issues as “provision of funds for the revitalisation of the universities, conclusion of renegotiation of 2009 agreement with regard to the conditions of service of our members, the issue of Earned Academic Allowances (EAA) that the federal government promised to start paying as from November last year, the issue of visitation panel to federal universities, which we have been talking about for three-four years now and finally the issue of proliferation of universities in the country, especially the universities by state governments.”

Reacting to a question on whether the union will suspend the strike to allow universities to reopen, Ogunyemi said: “We believe that if the federal government is sincere, our members would be willing to go back to work as soon we resolve these outstanding issues.

“What we need is the sincerity of purpose; we had a framework that we were using to engage all of these issues what we call the Memorandum of Action of February 7, 2019. So, the government can go back to the framework. That framework provides timelines for the implementation of agreements reached. “When we say memorandum of action, every item has a timeline; so we want the government to demonstrate good faith and our members will go back to work.

“Those aspects of the timelines that ought to have been met should be met. Let the other timelines contained in the 2019 agreement be revalidated.”

For instance, Ogunyemi said the federal government promised to pay the outstanding balance of the Earned Academic Allowances up to 2018 starting from November last year.

He said under the implementation timeline agreed on in February last year, the government promised to pay the EAA in four installments beginning with the first batch being in November 2019 but failed to do so.

“We are approaching another November, one year after and no kobo has been paid,” he added.

On the dispute over IPPIS, Ogunyemi said that ASUU’s alternative platform, University Transparency and Accountability System (UTAS), was ready.

According to him, ASUU will soon submit the platform to the Ministry of Education and other agencies to test run.

“We are telling the government now that ASUU is ready for demonstration. We shall soon unveil our platform but part of the requirements for final adoption is that it must be surrendered to the Nigeria Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) for validation and that will also take sometimes. So, we are going to make it available to them for validation. But before that, we will do a demonstration for the Federal Ministry of Education to show how the platform operates and its advantages over IPPIS,” he said.

Before the lockdown to combat COVID-19 pandemic, that led to the closure of all schools nationwide, ASUU had declared an indefinite strike to protest the stoppage of their salaries and the order for the enrolment of its members into the IPPIS.

 

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Education

A soldier is arrested by Army for killing UNICAL student in Calabar

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A soldier who allegedly killed a final year Student of the University of Calabar has been arrested by The Nigerian Army.

The Director of Army Public Relations, Brig Gen Onyema Nwachukwu, in a speech, said the Army had instituted an investigation into the allegations.

9jaflair gathered that Mr Gray Agbesu was killed on Friday by a serving soldier deployed on duty at the Calabar Correctional Service facility.

Nwachukwu said the soldier who was arrested while trying to run off, is in the custody of the Military Police and would face judicial processes after the investigation.

He further stated that the Commander 13 Brigade had also visited the scene of the incident and spoke to the youth, assuring them of justice.

”The Commander has also paid a visit to the family of the deceased, where he repeated the Army’s resolve to ensure that the family gets justice over the killing of their son.

“The Brigade Commander has equally visited the Cross River State General Hospital, where the corpse of the deceased was deposited,” he said.

Onyema Nwachukwu re-assured the family and the community that the soldier will be thoroughly investigated and made to face judicial processes as directed by the law.
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Education

Lecturers caught on tape demanding sex, Shame on their faces as they are dismissed by UNILAG

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Boniface Igbeneghu and Samuel Omoniyi Oladipo, lecturers of University of  Lagos have been dismissed by Unilag, for insisting on sex for admission from a reporter who disguised as an admission finder.

The Senate had instigated a committee to make findings on their demand which was caught on tape.

Kiki Mordi who posed as a 17-year-old prospective student in a BBC Investigative Series, Africa Eye is an undercover journalist.

Recollect the documentary, published in October 2019, focused on sexual harassment and assaults in tertiary institutions in Nigeria and Ghana.

It roped Boniface, Oladipo, and University of Ghana lecturers Paul Butakor and Ransford Gyampo.

Igbeneghu was a lecturer in the Department of European Languages and Integration Studies.

The former sub-dean, Faculty of Arts, was dismissed as head pastor of a local Foursquare Gospel Church at the start of the scandal.

Oladipo lectured at the Department of Economics, Faculty of Social Sciences. The partner in crime had been sacked.

A statement on Wednesday by UNILAG Registrar, Azeez Oladejo announced their dismissal for “misconduct”.

It disclosed that the Governing Council at its meeting on May 31, 2021, approved the decision.

Oladejo said the action was in line with section 18 of the University of Lagos Act 1967.

“Committee further instructed that the management should go through the sexual harassment policy as may be necessary and effective movement to prevent future occurrence”, he concluded.

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Education

Atas Lasu Ankara Day Sponsored By 9jaflair

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Atas Lasu Ankara Day

The Atas LASU, celebrated their Ankara day in a grand style towards weekend. The event, tagged Atas Ankara day, was sponsored by 9jaflair in conjunction with LUSH.
The event was attended by lecturers from the department of Theatre art, Music, English among others. The students of theatre art in 100- 400 level and some Alumni as well as others from Music, English, History, and Philosophy in LASU, Ojo campus, trooped into the Art auditorium in their numbers in other to grace the occasion.
It was an interesting edition of the Atas Ankara day in theatre art, LASU, held in the auditorium on the 30th of April, 2021.


The Atas Ankara uniform was a tie-dye design which was received by all. The occasion featured different performances, like singing, dancing, acting and pageantry.
The pageantry part of part of the event was full of fun. The pageants were twenty in all, ten males and ten females. They came in accordance to their numbers looking colourful and rich in their splendid display for the competition.
The ceremony was in honour of the inductees of the department and the pageantry was to select the Mr and Miss Atas LASU. The competition consisted of the introduction, walk steps, talent show by the contestants and questions from the Judges.


The pageants performance was over as the Judges chose the first, second and third runner up as well as the winners. The winners were given academic scholarship by 9jaflair and gifts from LUSH.
Despite the break in transmission, the event was brought to a successful conclusion at around 6PM that friday. It was a day that would go down well in history of Atas LASU.

Favour Osesa…

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