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ASUP suspends two months strike

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The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, ASUP, on Tuesday called off its two month old industrial action.

ASUP National Chairman, Usman Dutse, made the disclosure at a news conference in Abuja, News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, reports.

Dutse also disclosed that the request for a revitalisation fund of N15 billion had been made by the Minister Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu in lieu of the NEEDS assessment.

According to Dutse, government has equally made a public pronouncement on the issue conveying the government’s approval for the release of the sum as requested.

According to Dutse: “We have decided to suspend our two month old strike; this decision was taken at the end of our National Executive Council (NEC) meeting.

“We shall not hesitate to resume the suspended strike should government fail to review the Memorandum of Action (MoA) and ensure full implementation before end of May 2019.

“This is in view of the progress made in the course of the union’s negotiations with government.

“The NEC of the union, after exhaustive deliberations and in due consultations with the respective congresses across the nation resolved to suspend the current industrial action.

“This is based on the condition that government committed to review the Memorandum of Action to concretise the resolutions and ensure its full implementation by end of May 2019, failing which the union shall resume the action at its discretion.”

“It is expected that the funds shall be made available for disbursement to deserving institutions by April 2019.

“Equally, the approval of the NEEDS assessment report shall be pursued with all diligence to ensure a sustained and effective intervention in the infrastructure and other needs of our institutions,” he added.

The union president also said on the issue of salary shortfall, promotion arrears and allowances that N16.7 billion has been released.

According to him, the union was informed of the release of N16.7 billion covering agencies of government, including affected Polytechnics cleared by the Presidential Initiative for Continuous Audit for shortfalls and promotion arrears.

Read Also: Who cares about ASUU, ASUP strike?
“A circular had also been released to all Rectors conveying increased personnel funding for 2019 and directing the payment of full salaries and allowances in Polytechnics.

“A schedule from the office of the Federal Ministry of Finance containing institutions contained in the phase one of the shortfall refund payments has been released.

“Our union notes that 11 institutions from the sector are cleared to receive funds from the approved tranche. Our union has been reassured that the next phase will contain more institutions.

”The government reported moves to review the instruments for accreditation to include such requirements. The union was informed that NBTE had been directed to cease further regulatory activities in such institutions.

“Document conveying the implementation of this resolution has been released vide letter ref: C/TEB.97/Vol.II/512 of 4th February, 2019 from the NBTE conveying a review of the guidelines for programme accreditation to include the issue of regular payment of salaries and allowances in institutions,” he said.

He said that it was equally resolved that the union be included in the multi stakeholder forum involving proprietors of all public tertiary institutions to accommodate Polytechnics/Monotechnics.

Dutse added that, it was agreed that the documents currently before the Head of Civil Service of the Federation be retrieved and reviewed to address the concerns of the union, and be presented to the board of the NBTE before the end of March, 2019 for approval.

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Education

Chinese government offers scholarship to 58 Nigerians

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The Chinese Government has awarded scholarships to 58 Nigerians among whom were 16 doctorate degree students, 39 masters’ degree and three undergraduates, according to a report byPUNCH.

The beneficiaries received their university admission notices from the Counselor, Embassy of China in Nigeria, Mr Li Xuda, in Abuja on Friday.

Addressing the awardees during a pre-departure briefing, the Ambassador of China to Nigeria, Dr Zhou Pingjian, encouraged them to work hard in fulfilling their dreams and to observe and learn what brought China to where it is today.

He said, “This year marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

“In these years, China has always placed education as fundamental to its pursuit of national rejuvenation.

“Every year, hundreds of Nigerian students get scholarships and chase their dreams in China; some of them are sponsored by Chinese companies.

“Last year at the Confucius Institute, University of Lagos, the body of Chinese investors announced the award of scholarships to 63 students of the university to study in Chinese institutions.”

The envoy added that 6,845 Nigerian students were studying in China with 512 covered by Chinese government scholarship.

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Education

NUC: FG appoints Executive Secretaries

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The National Universities Commission (NUC) has appointed Dr Suleiman Ramon-Yusuf as Deputy Executive Secretary (Academics) and Dr Kidado Kumo as Deputy Executive Secretary (Administration).

The commission’s weekly bulletin made available to journalists in Abuja on Friday announced the appointments.

According to the bulletin, the appointment which took effect from June 20 was approved by the Governing Board of NUC following nominations by the Executive Secretary of the Commission, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed.

Before his appointment as the Deputy Executive Secretary (Academics), Ramon-Yusuf, was the Director of Research, Innovation and Information Technology at the Commission, a position he held since 2017.

Ramon-Yusuf has a Bachelor’s degree in Veterinary Medicine and Masters of Science in Environmental Toxicology, Master of Business Administration (MBA) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D) in Environmental Toxicology.

He also went through specialised training in quality assurance, open, distance and E-learning with the UNESCO International Institute for International Planning in Paris and Institute for Socio-Cultural Studies of the University of Kassel, Witzenhausen, Germany.

Ramon-Yusuf participated in the university staff development programme in 2002 and earned a postgraduate certificate in quality assurance and curriculum development.

Kumo, until his own appointment, was the Director of Academic Planning at the commission.

He has a Bachelor in Education (B.Ed) degree in Islamic Studies from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Masters in Education (M.Ed) in Education Psychology and a Ph.D in the same field.

Kumo began his career at the commission as an Assistant Chief Research Officer in 1997 and rose through the ranks to become a Deputy Director in 2009.

He was appointed Director, Executive Secretary’s office in 2013, a post he held until his redeployment to the Department of Academic Standards in 2014.

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Education

NABTEB releases 2019 results, reals out performances

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The National Business and Technical Examinations Board, said 32,673 candidates that sat for the NBC/NTC examinations scored five credits and above including English Language and Mathematics.

Registrar/Chief Executive, NABTEB, Prof. (Mrs.) Ifeoma Isiugo-Abanihe disclosed this while briefing newsmen on the outcome of the 2019 May/June NABTEB examination results in Benin City, the Edo State capital.

The Registrar/Chief Executive, NABTEB, said a total of 46,120 candidates obtained five credits and above with or without English Language and Mathematics; thus representing 83.05 percent of the candidates that sat for the same exams.

Prof. Ifeoma said a total of 56,413 candidates registered for the examinations in 1,501 centres, stressing that analysis of the enrollment indicated that candidates enrolled for 15 Engineering Trades, 7 Construction Trades, 9 Miscellaneous Trades, 4 Business Trades and 21 General Education Subjects.
He noted that a total of 55,532 candidates sat for the examinations which represents 98.44 percent of the total enrollment adding that it is important to note that out of the 30,955 candidates that sat for the various trades, 16,573 (53.54 percent) were certified as craftsmen.

While lauding the quality assurance mechanisms put in place by the board, Ifeoma said it has helped the body to checkmate examination malpractice.

“Permit me to observe that quality assurance mechanisms put in place by the board to checkmate examination malpractice seem to have continued to yield positive results.

“For instance, 399 candidates representing 0.72 percent of the examination candidates were found to be involved in examination malpractice compared to 842 candidates, representing 1.52 percent of the total number of candidates during the May/June 2018 certificate examinations”, she said.

She however stressed that, as part of the effort of the federal government to empower Nigerians with skills, the National Skills Qualification Framework was approved by the Federal Ministry of Education which expanded the assessment horizon of NABTEB as general awarding body for the assessment and award of Nigerian Skills Qualification to products of both private and public institutions.

She further said NABTEB is therefore well prepared to collaborate with public and private training institutions that are engaged in training on technical, vocational or entrepreneurial skills in any part of the country for the purpose of conducting assessment and awarding certificates.

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