Tuesday, 8 September 2009
BY KAYODE BELLO
STUDENTS of the University of Ibadan under the aegis of Students Union Transition Committee (SUTC), National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) and Nigerian Youths in Motion (NYM), during the week in Ibadan, protested the lingering face-off between academics and government.
The police, who ensured that the protest was peaceful, accompanied the students round Ibadan metropolis, last Tuesday.
According to the students, the strike action embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) should be resolved to enable them go back to school.
The Federal Government had approved 40 per cent salary increase for the striking varsity lecturers, but that was rejected by ASUU.
According to the lecturers, they are not only fighting for salary increase, but also agitating for adequate funding of Nigerian universities; and to prevent the incidence of brain drain in the educational sector.
Commissioning galore in UI
BY ABRAHAM OLADIPUPO
DESPITE the delapidation and decay in the nation’s educational sector, the University of Ibadan community has continued to witness improvement in its facilities. The high point being commissioning of a solar station, car parks, Gamaliel Onosode Park, a fountain centre, and renovation of facilities in Mellanby Hall, among others.
The campus, which had been deserted since the commencement of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike, came alive on August 26, as Mr. Gamaliel Onosode, in company of his wife and friends, visited the school to commission the projects.
The relaxation centre built for students is named after him in commemoration of his 50 years of graduation from the university. The edifice, which is built with stockbroker’s fund, is a beautiful garden that will not only serve as a relaxation centre or park, but as a tourist centre for visitors.
Onosode had earlier in company of Zain officials, representatives of stockbrokers and principal officers of the school, commissioned the new car park at the main gate and the solar station before visiting Mellanby Hall, where he lived as a student, to commission the renovation exercise carried out last year.
Non-academic staff protest in LASU
BY REBECCA AKINMOLAYAN
LAST Monday, striking members of the Lagos State University (LASU) chapter of Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU) held a ‘rally’ to protest the alleged high-handedness of the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Lateef Hussain, who was recently re-elected.
The protesting staff said their action had nothing to do with the strike called by the national body. They claimed that the vice chancellor is autocratic and until he is ready to dialogue with them and address the issues on ground, they would continue their strike.
In a similar rally two months ago, the non-academic staff had reportedly locked the VC in the administration block and also deflated the tyres of his official car.
The VC, according to sources in his office, has not been to the school for about seven weeks, though he has called on members of staff through the media to resume their duties since they have nothing to do with the national strike embarked upon by their parent body.
RIVCAS celebrates cultural heritage
BY GODSWILL ODEKU
THE culture of a people draws their attention to their homeland, causing them to forge bonds of unity, peace and harmony among themselves, the President of National Union of Rivers State Students (NURSS), Rivers State College of Arts and Science (RIVCAS) chapter, Comrade Ikpeorluorlu Christian, has said.
The students’ union leader also called on the Federal Government to address the demands of the striking lecturers “so that Nigerian students could go back to school.”
Christian, who spoke at the cultural day of the institution’s Rumuola campus, said, “culture draws our attention and spirit home because culture is the norm of our life.”
While decrying the adverse effects of the ongoing ASUU strike on the educational system in the country, Christian said, “the strike is not affecting the children of politicians and the elite as they have their children schooling abroad.”
The President of National Union of Ogoni Students (NUOS) of the school, Comrade Vincent Kpegbara Baritosa, who also spoke at the cultural fiesta, said the rich cultural heritage of the people provides a platform for discussing critical issues, resolving conflicts, and promoting peace and harmony in the society.
Calling on government to properly fund educational institutions in the country in order to scale up their capacity to deliver qualitative education, the Gbenemene Dookpa I of Ogoni House in the institution urged the students to support the management of the institution in its quest to make it a centre of academic excellence.
The students showcased Gere-gere (special traditional drums), Yeb kurute, Yeb piakane, Yeb piamene, and Gbene-kere and Gbagba-kere (large and small drums) alongside different dance styles for the youth, elders, chiefs and traditional rulers respectively.
Explaining the significance of the drums, Elder Beesor said they are used to introduce and salute dignitaries, heralding special days, and disseminating information.
The cultural day, which is a part of activities marking the Students’ Week, showcased cultural dances, songs, attires, and foods of the Ogoni, Ibani, Orashi, Kalabari, Wakirike (Okrika) and Ikwerre. Others are the Igbo, Middle-Belt, Effik and the Ibibio.
Spring Bank gives AAUA water
BY DAMILOLA ADEYEMI
AS part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Spring Bank Plc has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the authorities of Adekunle Ajasin University (AAUA), Akungba Akoko, on the provision of drinkable water for the community.
Estimated to cost over N38m and coming under the auspices of AAUA Spring Water, the project will, among others, package water in sachets and plastic bottles.
Commending on the bank, the acting Vice Chancellor, Prof. Oladele Awobuluyi, said, “there are lots of corporate organisations here that do not have any CSR programme for this institution.”
Mr. Tope Okunola, the bank’s regional head, expressed optimism that the project will be of immense benefit to both parties and the communities.
The bank’s Ikare branch manager, Mr. Jimoh Azeez, while taking the team on a tour of the facility said the equipment procured for the factory were the latest technology according to NAFDAC specification.
He added that the factory would not only provide good water on specification for members of the university community, but also job opportunities for many.
Meanwhile, a non-governmental organisation for physically challenged students in the country, Better Living Foundation of the Disabled (BELIFOD) has congratulated the newly appointed Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the Governing Council of the university, Dr. Erastus Akingbola, who until recently was the CEO of Intercontinental Bank. He was appointed to head the 10-year old institution following the dissolution of the previous board by the state government.
In a statement signed by its president, Samson Ogowewo, it described the appointment as the best that could happen to the institution, which had been bedeviled by a series of crisis in recent times thereby leading to its closure.
The organisation mentioned some of the CSR activities of the bank, which includes a 1,500 seater multipurpose hall, 500-bed hostel and yearly scholarship awards for several indigent students. The statement, however, called for support at making life pleasant for the physically challenged in the institution.
OAU honours New Horizon boss, Akano for role in ICT developmen
By Adeyemi Adepetun
For distinguishing himself in the cause of national development through his exemplary works and achievements in the area of Information and Communications Technology (ICT), Mr. Tim Akano, Managing Director of New Horizon has been conferred with the Distinguished Alumni Award by the Obafemi Awolowo University Alumni Association, Lagos Branch.
The event which held recently at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Lagos saw Akano alongside other eleven other OAU Alumni honoured.
Akano’s award was handed over to him by the Vice Chancellor of the school, Professor Michael Faborode, who was apparently elated by the leading role the OAU Alumni were playing in the field of ICT IN Nigeria.
In a citation read on behalf of the Alumni, Akano was described as running one of Nigeria’s leading ICT skill acquisition enterprises.
A graduate of International Relations from OAU, Akano has since moved up in pursuant of more knowledge and educational career; he is now, also an alumnus of three other top universities and business schools including the IMD, Louisane, Geneva, WITS Business School, Johannesburg, South Africa and the Lagos Business school.
He was selected as one of Cocacola’s 50 “Future Leaders” in CCHBC to attend a one-year Senior Executive Program in IMD.
He was ICT Personality of the year 2009, of the National ICT Merit Award Committee One of the best 15 Innovative Techno-Preneurs in Nigeria, 2008 TELL Magazine 2008 one of the best 50 Corporate Movers in Nigeria.
Akano pioneered the integration of professional ICT-based training in Nigerian Universities, the integration of professional ICT-based training in Nigerian Secondary Schools Awarded over 20, 000 tuition free scholarships in the last four years.
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