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FG Offers ₦65 Billion To End ASUU Strike, Exempts ASUU From IPPIS

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FG Offers ₦65 Billion To End ASUU Strike, Exempts ASUU From IPPIS
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The Federal Government on Friday offered leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities N65 billion for Earned Academic Allowance and revitalisation.

The government also agreed to pay the striking lecturers through the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System) until ASUU’s University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) was ready for usage.

These are some of the agreements reached at the resumed meeting between the leadership of ASUU and the federal government team on Friday.

At the end of the seven- hour meeting, Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige told reporters that the Accountant-General of the Federation ( AGF) has offered to release N40 billion or in the alternative, N35 billion to be shared by all the registered Trade Unions in the universities after providing necessary evidence of having earned the allowance.

“The FG reiterated that her offer of N40 billion or 35 billion whichever is accepted by ASUU was for all the universities unions: ASUU had proposed that N40 billion be paid immediately for all unions ,” the Minister said.

Ngige said all vice-chancellors are to submit details of the EAA/EA to the National Universities Commission (NUC) on or before November 30.

Speaking on the issue of withheld salaries, Ngige said the Federal Ministry of Labour and Federal Ministry of Education will review the issue of “no work, no pay” as stipulated in Section 43 of the Trade Disputes Act Cap T8 laws of the federation of Nigeria, 2004 with a view to getting approval for the withheld salaries to be paid.


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Education

14-year-old girl wins UBA essay competition, gets N2.5 million

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14-year-old girl wins UBA essay competition, gets N2.5 million
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Ten of the twelve winners are girls.

The UBA Foundation, the CSR arm of the United Bank for Africa, today, held its tenth annual National Essay Competition(NEC) in a virtual ceremony that was attended by high school students from across the nation. The UBA Foundation’s Education initiative has been changing lives for a decade as the tertiary education scholarship programme continues to impact the lives of many students and their communities.

For the fourth consecutive year, the females have led this competition with 14-year-old Eshiet Abasiekeme of Bright Stars Model Secondary School from Akwa-Ibom state taking home this year’s winning prize. Eshiet received an educational grant of N2.5 million to study in any African university of her choice. She will also be supported throughout her educational career and beyond with constant mentoring by the UBA Foundation.

Abasiekeme who had joined the virtual event from her base in Akwa Ibom state in Nigeria, could not contain her excitement as she heard the announcement that she had won the first prize of the NEC 2020. “I feel honoured to be the winner of this year’s NEC, and I want to appreciate UBA and UBA Foundation as this will help towards my dream of becoming a lawyer,” she said proudly, expressing that she would like to go to university in Uyo in her home state.

The second prize was awarded to 14-year-old Mofuluwake Adesanya of Spring Forte-Lead College Lagos State, who won a N2,000,000 educational grant, whilst the third prize of N1,500,000 went to Abdulganiyy Habeeba, 16 years old. Abdulganiyy attends the International School, University of Lagos.

Eshiet and the 11 other finalists, took home their brand new laptop computers to enable them continue to work competitively in a world that is rapidly becoming fully digitalised.

Congratulating all the winners at the final event of the competition, the Managing Director/CEO of UBA Foundation, Bola Atta, applauded all the participants for their exceptional brilliance. She explained that the Foundation had taken into consideration the effect that the Covid-19 pandemic has had on lives and incomes across board and had increased the prize money by 33 per cent this year to help cushion any negative or inflationary effects.

Emphasising the driving force behind the annual competition, she said, “We are passionate about the annual NEC because it changes lives and helps to improve the quality of lives of students and their families. The NEC helps to improve the quality of writing and competitiveness amongst students. We have launched in more African countries this year and would have launched the initiative in 20 countries by the end of 2021. It is not just about writing essays, the ripple effect is really quite enormous, and we are glad that it is cascading to other countries where we operate.’ she said.

Also speaking at the opening of the event, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of UBA Plc, Kennedy Uzoka, commended all 12 finalists, expressing that UBA was happy to be touching lives and making a solid impact through its National Essay Competition, which is now in its 10th edition. He was very pleased about the fact that more females again came out tops this year, adding that notwithstanding the constraints and challenges of 2020, the Foundation received the highest number of entries ever, at over 12,000 digital submissions’.

Mr Uzoka, who is also the Chairman, UBA Foundation, said, “The NEC has been changing lives positively for 10 years, and we have awarded scholarships to students not just in Nigeria but in other parts of Africa like Ghana, Sierra Leone and Senegal. Some of these students are already graduates and contributing meaningfully to their communities’.

“To all 12 of you that have emerged finalists, I would like to congratulate you. If out of 12,000 entries you were able to make it to the top 12, that represents about 0.12% of the entries. You are no doubt, already a winner,” he continued.

UBA Foundation’s National Essay Competition is an initiative under the Education pillar of the Foundation. Now in its tenth year, the aim of the NEC is to ensure that more African youths have access to education. The programme also highlights the good quality of education that exists on the continent as it stresses that the grant must be used in any university of the winners’ choice on the African continent.

2020 UBAF TOP 12 FINALISTS

S/N NAME POSITION
1 Eshiet Abasiekeme Eshiet 1st

2 Mofuluwake Adesanya 2nd

3 Abdulganiyu Habeeba 3rd

4 Emenugha Hannah Amarachi 4th

5 Ibem Marylyn Anya 5th

6 Ehibor Favour 6th

7 Nwabueze Regina Ugochi 6th

8 Dimaro Tamarapreye 7th

9 Ozoke Melvin Damian Uchenna 8th

10 Enobong Flourish David 9th

11 Chukwuma Light E. C. 10th

12 Stephen God’s Grant 11th


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Strike Will End If Children Of Politicians Will Be Stopped From Studying Abroad -ASUU

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Strike Will End If Children Of Politicians Will Be Stopped From Studying Abroad -ASUU
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The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has called for a law placing restriction on public office holders from sending their children to foreign countries to study.

The Akure zonal Coordinator of ASUU, Prof. Olufayo Olu-Olu said such ban would put an end the persistent strike in Nigeria’s education sector.

Olu-Olu explained that if such a law is promulgated, it would help to rebuild Nigeria’s education sector.

A statement by Olu-Olu reads partly: “Members of the ruling class and their cohorts have their wards schooling abroad, so they do not commit to ending ASUU strike since the political office has become occupational rather than public service.

“Until we domesticate two very important practices as laws in Nigeria, we may not get out of this doldrums -first, an act to compel all public office holders and government appointees to have their wards educated in Nigeria public schools from primary to tertiary level.

“When this law is enacted, perhaps we will gradually see the end of needless ASUU strikes in the country.”

ASUU has been on strike for about eight months, following federal government’s failure to meet its demands.

Despite a meeting with government representatives last week, ASUU had vowed to continue with the strike until all demands are met.

However, there are speculations that ASUU zonal branches would meet by Friday to decide if they would call off or continue the strike.


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Send Pupils With Respiratory Symptoms Home – FG Tells Schools

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Send Pupils With Respiratory Symptoms Home – FG Tells Schools
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National Coordinator, Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Dr Sani Aliyu, has urged schools to send pupils with respiratory symptoms consistent with coronavirus (COVID-19) back home to reduce risk of transmission.

Aliyu gave the advice on Monday at the COVID-19 National briefing in Abuja.

Speaking on school reopening, he said that PTF would like to re-emphasise adherence to non-pharmaceutical interventions by schools, particularly screening and heightening awareness with regards to COVID-19, following issues it had with Lagos State over outbreaks in some schools.

“Any student presenting with symptoms consistent with COVID-19, particularly respiratory symptoms or fever, should not be allowed to come to school.

”When teachers notice a child with respiratory symptoms, the child should be sent back home so that we can reduce the risk of transmission.

”Just as it is important to communicate effectively with parents, staff, school health teams should be creating protocols and providing regular updates on any change to the school procedures as it relates to COVID.

“We encourage schools to continue to consider creative solutions to abide by our COVID guidelines including staggered learning to avoid overcrowding, platooning, daily attendance and adjusting teachings among others,” he said.


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