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ASUU Strike: FG Working On A Funding Structure For Public Universities – Nwajiuba

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The Federal Government is working on a funding structure for public universities in the country as part of moves to tackle the incessant strikes by lecturers in these institutions. 

This is according to the former Minister of State for Education Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba who noted that the government’s funding of public universities is unsustainable.

“I have proposed, and the Minister of Education (Adamu Adamu) will continue discussing this with Mr President, a new scheme in which universities have a different way of earning money to be able to care for themselves,” he said on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics.

The presidential aspirant of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 election maintained that with the number of public universities in the country, these schools have to get new ways of making money to fund their institutions.

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“Because you see, there are only 50 of these federal universities and there are 200 others. However, these 50 alone are more than 75 percent of the number of students in the entire university structure – about 2.2m of them,” he argued.

“So, it is important we give them a funding structure; we need to bring a funding structure to the table because this coming hand-in-cap to the Federal Government at all times cannot be continued and is not sustainable.”

Nwajiuba, who last week resigned his position in the cabinet to concentrate on his presidential dream, said “this (a new funding structure) is something I would implement if you give me your mandate to be president.

“I know that even if it is not implemented now, the universities autonomy law needs to be reactivated.”

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Education

Lagos fixes date for Basic Education Certificate Examination resit

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The Lagos State Examinations Board has fixed October 6 as the new date for the 2022 Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) resit.

Director of the Board, Orunsolu Adebayo made the announcement in a statement on Wednesday.

The examination, initially scheduled for September 28, would still take place in various designated centres across the state.

Adebayo explained that the postponement became necessary to accommodate schools yet to register their candidates.

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“The Board does not wish to deny the affected candidates the opportunity of taking the examination”, he noted.

The statement urged principals to take note of the new date and make best use of the extended date to ensure that affected candidates were duly informed.

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JAMB introduces double fingerprints for 2023 UTME

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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) says it has adopted new guidelines to ensure the seamless conduct of next year’s Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).

The board revealed the new guidelines in the latest edition of the weekly bulletin of the office of the registrar on Monday.

JAMB introduced double fingerprints, where a candidate is expected to register at least two fingers.

The exam body said any finger may be used for biometric verification before entering the examination hall on the appointed date.

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The board also said candidates with bad fingerprints would be scheduled for the exam as “exemption candidates.”

It warned that some cybercafes and tutorial centres had been prohibited from participating in UTME.

The board also introduced the CBT centre accreditation to vet centres based on whether or not they meet the board’s new requirements which include the use of laptop computer systems with a specified RAM capacity.

Ishaq Oloyede, the JAMB registrar, also announced the introduction of biometric accreditation for CBT centre registration officers which he said will now be captured ahead of the exercise.

He said the board would consider separating UTME registration from that of Direct Entry (DE) starting from 2023.

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According to Oloyede, the idea of the separation is to further consolidate its data collection efforts.

Earlier in the month, JAMB said it would no longer be conducting mop-up exercises for UTME candidates.

Mop-up exercise is usually held for candidates who could not participate in the UTME during the period of the exercise for some verified reasons.

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JAMB said the move was to further strengthen the noose around examination malpractice.

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ASUU Strike: Court Strikes Out Suit Against Varsity Lecturers

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The National Industrial Court Abuja has struck out a suit instituted by one Umar Lawal, the President of the National Association of Nigerian Students, asking the Academic Staff Union of Universities, to call off its seven-month-old strike and return to school.

Lawal had instituted the case on behalf of himself and the association.

Justice Polycarp Hamman struck out the suit on Tuesday after the counsel to Lawal, Debo Ikuesan, withdrew the suit on the grounds that the student body is challenging his position as president, denying that he is the leader of NANS as he had deposed to.

Counsel to ASUU, Marshal Abubakar also informed the court that he is not opposing the application to withdraw the suit.

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In the suit, Faruk, who claimed to be the president of NANS sought the court’s order mandating ASUU to call off the industrial action it commenced in February 2022.

He said the strike action affects students’ right to education under section 18, Chapter 2 of the 1999 constitution as amended. He added that the prolonged strike has caused damage to Nigerian students as they have lost valuable time and opportunity in their educational and career pursuits.

They are seeking an order of the court to among others, order ASUU to call off its strike.

They are also seeking an order of court restraining ASUU and its members from further engaging or partaking in the industrial action they commenced.

The outgoing President of the student body, Sunday Asefon, had approached the court claiming that Umar Lawal does not have the mandate of NANS to commence the action.

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He said Umar Lawal had contested and lost the position of National President of NANS.

On account of the objection by the Student’s body, counsel to Umar Farouk, sought an order to discontinue the case, a stand which the counsel to ASUU, Mister Abubakar Marshall, did not oppose to.

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