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VC laments ASUU strike

By Ola Ajayi & Akinwunmi Bello
WORRIED by the biting effects of the strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), the Vice Chancellor, University of Ibadan, Prof. Olufemi Bamiro, yesterday said the strike could frustrate the successful implementation of some international programmes.

The university was one of the 10 top universities in the world that won a grant of $900,000, donated by McArthur Foundation to host a new Master’s degree programme in Development Practice.

He said, “Nobody would want to come from Ghana, Botswana or other countries to University of Ibadan for a four-semester programme and would be happy spending more due to instability in the system”.

Continuing, he noted that, “People who are coming to you want to be assured that there is stability in the system. If they sense any instability, they will not come. They may decide to go to other African countries with relative stability.”.

One of the programmes that the incessant strikes and erratic power supply could hinder its success, according to the VC, is MDP.

To reduce the possible effects of the epileptic power supply, the university don told newsmen that the institution had gone ahead to acquire two giant generators at the cost of N350m.

Another snag that could frustrate the institution’s efforts was how to afford about 850 litres of diesel to keep the generators running.

He said, having acquired the generators, “Where then do we get money to procure diesel and other equipment necessary for the servicing of the generators? We cannot charge tuition and we dare not increase fees any how. We have to depend on our IGR.”

Each of the generators, he added, would consume at least 850 litres of diesel every hour. “That is about five drums. Going by the rising cost of diesel, the university would spend a lot to power the entire campus, he stated..

He was, however, hopeful that the move by the institution to further reduce the effects of power outage would pay off as he stressed that the administrative building, offices of the VC, DVC and the streetlight in the Oduduwa area of the campus are being powered by solar energy”.

….As lecturers accuse Poly of inciting students

LECTURERS of the Polytechnic, Ibadan and other higher institutions in Oyo State have alleged that the authorities are instigating students of the institution against them due to the on-going strike over the introduction of obnoxious tax by the Otunba Adebayo Alao-Akala-led administration. Just on Friday, the lecturers of the institutions raised alarm that some people were threatening to kill them. The Chairman of ASUP, The Polytechnic, Ibadan, Comrade Dosunmu Adewale made this known to newsmen.

But the Public Relations of the institution, Mr. Sola Soladoye denied the allegation, saying it was baseless and meaningless. He said, “it may be a ploy to blackmail the management. It is not impossible that some people want the strike to continue unabated”.

The chairman of the ASUP called on well meaning Nigerians to prevail on the state government to remove the crucifying tax which is not being implemented in any institution across the country.

“This fight is not personal. The people we are fighting for include the Rector. And anytime we fight for improvement in welfare package they are the ones that benefit more”, he stated

All the Chairmen of Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union(COEASU), Emmanuel Alayande College of Education, Oyo and Lanlate, Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Polytechnics (SSANIP), Non-Academic Staff Union of the three satellite campuses of The Polytechnic, Ibadan, Eruwa and Saki; Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU), Senior Staff Union of Colleges of Education of Nigeria (SSUCOEN); and College of Agriculture, Igboora jointly agreed that until the government rescinds in its decision to snuff lives out of the members of the unions through outrageous taxes, the strike would not be called off.

ASUP chairman said, “At a time, we have been receiving text messages that I’m about to discredit the tenure of the rector. In sha Allah, we shall deal with you. But the person did not put his name”.

According to them, they want the government to pay arrears of their Consolidated Tertiary Salary Structure (CONTISS) allowances owed between January 2007 and  October 2008.

They  lamented that the governor had hijacked the administration of the schools and that he was not ready to listen to their complaints as they claimed that repeated efforts at meeting the governor had met the brick-wall because of unnecessary protocol.


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