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ASUU decries ‘evil gang up’ against public education in Nigeria

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Pictorial of ASUU Modibbo Adama University Yola Branch Protest

…Accuses Ngige of personal vendetta, turning lecturers to casual labourers

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has decried what it called ‘an evil gang up’ against public education in Nigeria adding that the federal government is allowing the golden opportunity to resolve the contention to slip away.

Chairperson of ASUU, Modibbo Adama University (MAU) branch, Yola, El-Maude Jibreel Gambo who decried the crass neglect being meted to public education at a press conference on Tuesday, accused the minister of labour Dr. Chris Ngige of waging a personal vendetta against ASUU.

He noted that as a law abiding union of intellectuals, ASUU has complied with the rulings of the national industrial court and that of the court of appeal but despite that the federal government has blatantly refused to engage the union in finding lasting solutions to the lingering issues between it and the lectures.

“The federal government of Nigeria is missing the opportunity presented by the suspension of the strike to engage the union on finding amicable ways of resolving the issues that led to the strike.

“Instead, the minister of labour and employment, Dr. Chris Ngige in pursuance of his personal vendetta and war he declared against ASUU, wrote to the minister of finance to pay our members pro-rata salaries, thus treating us as casual labourers. Its so sad that governance has been turned to an avenue of oiling personal ego irrespective of the damage being caused to the nation’s universities,” he said.

The university don noted that FG’s refusal to pay lecturers their 7 months withheld salary in addition to pro-rata payment of October salary clearly signals a hidden agenda to casualize the academic environment and suffocate public universities in Nigeria.

“ASUU has signed three different Memorandum of Action (MoA) with the current government in 2017, 2019 and 2020. But the government failed to implement substantial components of the MoA’s. This is apart of the government discarding the reports that arose from collective bargaining between the two committees constituted by the government headed respectively by Prof. Munzali Jibril and Prof Nimi Briggs on one hand and ASUU on the other hand.

“The collective bargaining reports contained far reaching agreements on condition of service of university staff, funding and autonomy of universities that if implemented would go a long way in changing the narrative of the university education in Nigeria to a better one. The FGN mischievously refused to accept the report of committees the government itself set up but insisted on ASUU accepting ridiculous “take it or leave it” offer,” Gambo said.

He accused FG of consistently failing to address the major issue in contention including review of condition of service of university staff, payment of outstanding Earned Academic Allowances (EAA), funding for revitalization of universities and release of reports of visitation panels to universities which if done, were meant to resuscitate public universities adding that instead the government created diversionary measures through litigation while refusing to pay legitimate earned salaries.

“The two key ministers (Adamu Adamu and Chris Ngige) have contributed significantly in ensuring that the impasse lingers without end in sight by creating bottle necks and sometimes deliberately sabotaging efforts aimed at resolving the impasse. Moreover, Adamu Adamu categorically stated that he has failed in discharging his responsibilities but president Buhari is still maintaining him as a minister.

“Majority of the people in government are products of free education but they deliberately refused to extend such gesture to the children of the masses. They are comfortably siphoning our common resource to educate their children in private foreign universities while superintending the conversion of public universities to glorified secondary schools,” Gambo added.

The university don called on Nigerians to support ASUU in its quest to frustrate the evil gang up meant to totally destroy the university system.

“We urge Nigerians to impress it on government that the path it has taken will not augur well for Nigerian education and economy. ASUU will not be coerced into abandoning the just struggle for the restoration of the university system for the benefit of the people of Nigeria, especially the poor and downtrodden Nigerians

“ASUU will resist all attempts to treat academic staff of universities as casual labourers and any move to jettison the principle of collective bargaining,” Gambo said.

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THANKSGIVING, PRAISES AS AS EVANG MILLING BOWS OUT AFTER 21 AS PREACHER CHURCH OF CHRIST KARU-JIKWOYI

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It was a moment of joy , Thanksgiving and excitement as members of the Church of Christ, Karu-Jikwoyi Congregation Celebrates Evangelist Milling Chukwumaeze who bows out after twenty-one years as minister of the congregation.

The New Preacher of the congregation, Evangelist Innocent Agu led other members to present a three million naira bank check in appreciation for the good work done by the exiting Preacher.

Speaking during the event tagged , ” Celebration of Service” Evangelist Obakemi Moses of the Church of Christ, Nyanya congregation Charged Preachers of the Lord’s Church to be Passionate about their works at all times. He reminded them that God has called them out to dedicate themselves to his service. He lauded the Church of Christ Karu-Jikwoyi for celebrating Evangelist Milling Chukwumaeze.

Evangelist Obakemi tasked the Churches to always be focus on its goals as stated in the holy scriptures.

In welcome remarks, the host Evangelist, Innocent Agu thanked his predecessor for diligently servicing the congregation in the past twenty-one years. He noted that the Church will continue to respect and love the outgoing Preacher. He gave a historic explanation of how Evangelist Milling Chukwumaeze became a member of the Lord’s Church while praising his dedication all these years.

In their Goodwill messages, Evangelist Imoh Atakpa of the Church of Christ, Kubwa and his Kagini Counterpart Evangelist Uche Onyeike tasked members of the Lord’s Church to take proper care of their Evangelists if they hope to get the best of them. They lauded Evangelist Milling Chukwumaeze for his commitment to duty, especially in the Television Evangelism activities of the Churches of Christ in Abuja and its Environs.

In his response, Evangelist Milling Chukwumaeze thanked the Church of Christ Karu-Jikwoyi for giving him the opportunity to serve in God’s vineyard and supported him throughout the last two decades on the saddle. He said though age was not on his side he was not willing to quit, but the congregation decided otherwise. Evangelist Chukwumaeze enjoined the members to be heavenly minded at all times while running the Christian race with purity and steadfastness. He prayed for the congregation to do better under his successor while enjoining everyone to support him physically and spiritually.

Highpoint of the event was the cutting of the celebration cake and general presentation of gifts by members.

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Rev Yakubu dispels Yomi’s claims of NCPC suspension of pilgrimage

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….says exercise ongoing, challenges Adamawa CAN chairman on corruption allegations

The Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission, Reverend Yakubu Pam, on Saturday debunked claims that the NCPC has suspended the 2022 pilgrimage.

Pam also challenged the Chairman of the Adamawa State chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Bishop Steven Dami Manzo over the corruption allegations he levelled against him.

NCPC Board Chairman, Rev Yomi Kasali had recently announced the suspension of all activities related to this year’s pilgrimage to Jerusalem while Bishop Manzo had accused the NCPC executive secretary of financial misappropriation.

Reacting during a news programme on TVC on Saturday evening, the NCPC boss said as the chief accounting officer of the commission, nobody had suspended the 2022 pilgrimage.

He said there was no time that the NCPC management or Board held any meeting to take a decision to suspend this year’s pilgrimage, which had already commenced and was still ongoing.

Pam clarified that due to some logistics problems encountered in the course of the pilgrimage, the Board of the Commission met in November and resolved that the commission would not continue with the airlifting of the pilgrims from the states that had paid to Israel for the November-December exercise.

He added that discontinuing the airlifting of intending pilgrims does not amount to and should not be misconstrued as a suspension of the entire pilgrimage activities.

Pam further stated that suspending pilgrimage was a cumbersome process which the Commission could not unilaterally take a decision on as its supervisory body must inform the President through the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the National Assembly.

He added that the Commission’s customers, which are the state governments that have paid and the private tour operators could also drag NCPC to court if it decided to take any decision to suspend the pilgrimage.

Pam said, “Because of the logistics problems we faced, we said we should not continue with airlifting, not suspending pilgrimage activities. Suspension means that everything is locked down.

“Before you make a statement on anything suspension, you must write our supervisory body and tell them that we’re suspending activities. You’ll also have to, which is through the office of the SGF, to inform Mr President that everything in the commission is suspended. You must also write the National Assembly and our customers because they have the right to take us to court as a lot of them have paid us to travel.

“But when we say airlifting is suspended, it means other activities are going on and what are other activities? Today, we have over 12 states that have already paid to travel and we’re conducting what we call screening to make sure we have those who are certified to travel, by health, and those that we feel may not abscond. This is what is going on and is part of the pilgrimage activities and just within three weeks or two weeks ago, we have more than four states that have already paid.

“And we have private sector tour organisations which registered with us and they have the licence to carry people to Israel and bring them back but through us because we also screen them and we are in charge of the visas. Until we write the authorities and Government of Israel to give them visas, they will not have visas. And right now as I’m talking, we have over a hundred of them in Israel. So, if there is suspension of pilgrimage activities, why are people in Israel? Why are people in Jordan?”

Pam also said there was no controversy about the N1.5millon paid by intending pilgrims, adding that the commission held a meeting with its private customers and the states in September where the fee was agreed upon.

“As I said, about 12 states have already paid. We start with that first before you go into procurement and then you award the contract to the contractors that will carry the people by the airlines and then the ground handlers who are there in Israel,” he said.

On the corruption allegations leveled against him by the Adamawa State CAN chairman, the NCPC boss said anyone with any proof of graft against should present his evidence to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, which is the supervisory body rather than making wild and unfounded allegations in the media.

“I’m here as the chief accounting officer of the commission to say that there is no suspension of pilgrimage anywhere. If somebody mentions corruption at NCPC, there is a way you can bring it up – bring evidence of the money and whatever it is, there is EFCC or you can take it to those who supervise us. You can come to the media level corruption allegations,” Pam said.

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WAYSS2022: U.S Secretary Envoy on Trade, Patricia Yakubu to deliver keynote address

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The U.S Secretary Envoy on Trade Amb. Patricia Yakubu has been announced as the keynote speaker at the West African Youths and Students Summit (WAYSS2022) scheduled to hold in Niamey of Niger 🇳🇪 Republic. In a release by the Secretary-General, Amb Mohammed Ahmed Marafa, the theme of the summit is ‘Empowering the West African Young Population for Sustainable Development’

The summit is the flagship annual event of the West African Youth Congress that brings together young people on the subregion and diaspora to deliberate on the crucial issues affecting the common future of young people. WAYC convenes the largest youths and students gathering on the subregion under the banner of West Africa Youths & Students Summit (WAYSS).

The Summit will commence on December 15, 2022 and among some prominent speakers are Head of UN Human Rights Commission Niger 🇳🇪 Republic, Amb. Dr. Omer Kebiwou KALAMEU, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan to Niger Republic, His Excellency M. Ahmed Ali Sirohey, and CEO Hon. Ikechukwu Ezeugwu Foundation of Nigeria.

Others are Ambassador of Nigeria to Niger Republic, Minister of Youth and Sports of The Gambia, Hon. Bakary Y. Badji, The Minister of Youth and Sports of Niger Republic Sekou Doro Adamou, Dr. Samuel C. Avemaria Utulu of the American University of Nigeria and Hon. Mohammed Mayas a seasoned politician and Academician among others.

Highpoints of the summit will include Panel and Interactive sessions.

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