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Leadership controversy: Oyo NUT in turmoil as State Govt extends chairman’s tenure



…Gov. Makinde granted extension of service year for NUT chairman — Ex- Secretary reveals

The Oyo State chapter of the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT) is currently embroiled in a dispute following the state government’s decision to extend the tenure of the union’s Chairman, Mr. Raji Oladimeji.

This move, reportedly authorised by Governor Seyi Makinde, has sparked discontent among certain union members.

Mr. Oladimeji, who was elected last year for a four-year term, was due to retire this May. However, he has been granted a three-year extension to his service, ostensibly to enable him to fulfill his leadership term.

While some senior figures in the union have attempted to mediate the conflict, their efforts have yet to quell the unrest. The dissatisfied faction within the union remains adamant that Mr. Oladimeji should step down from his role as chairman.

It was also reported that the aggrieved members of the union had written petitions and even gone to some radio stations in Ibadan to express their grievances over Oladimeji’s refusal to leave office after the expiration of his service year.

One of the aggrieved teachers, Mr Sulaimon Salaudeen, said the crisis was due to the refusal of the chairman who was to have retired and vacated office as NUT chairman but who was claiming that he had been given an extension of service.

“If at all he has been given an extension of service, does that allow him to continue as the NUT chairman? That is what the teachers are fighting for,” Salaudeen said.

He, however, admitted that some elders of the union had waded in to settle the matter.

The crisis within the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) in Oyo State is being addressed by stakeholders within the union, according to former NUT Secretary in the state, Olu Abiala.

He explained that the extension of service year for the NUT Chairman was not sought by the chairman himself, but was granted by the governor to allow him to continue his work on behalf of the union.

Abiala said that the Chairman had met with the governor to push for a new career structure for teachers in the state, which would extend their length of service.

The extension of service for the chairman was seen as a way to allow him to benefit from the new structure.

Some members of the union were unhappy that the chairman was more concerned with his own extension of service than with that of all members, but Abiala argued that if the chairman had waited for the extension to be implemented for all members, he would have retired before it happened.

“Before accepting the letter extending his service year, the NUT Chairman made consultations with some elders who asked him to accept the offer so that he would be able to complete the struggle he had started.

“If he had rejected the offer, it would amount to an act of ingratitude. “We all should rather commend the governor for doing so. In actual fact, the National Secretariat of NUT had commended the governor for this act of benevolence, as it is rare,” he said.

Abiala, who said that the governor had the prerogative to grant extension of service year to anybody he felt deserved it, cited some civil servants who had also benefited from such a gesture in the past.

Speaking on the development, the NUT chairman, said that the matter was an in-house issue which was being resolved.

Oladimeji stated that the agitation for extension of teachers’ service year was a national issue.

He said that the union had been making efforts to persuade the state government to domesticate the bill signed into law by former President Muhammadu Buhari which extended teachers’ length of service to 40 years and their retirement age to 65. The NUT chairman said that he had decided to exit office but for the intervention of the national leadership of the union which believed in his capacity to ensure the implementation of the act in the state.

He said when his service year was extended, the approval letter was taken to all the stakeholders and organs of the union, adding, however, that the elders had already waded into the matter.

“There is no division in the union. It is a kind of agitation that is expected in any decent society.

“It is not an issue that has split NUT. The union is indivisible. They have listened to our elders and the elders have invited them for a roundtable,” Oladimeji said

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ASUP gives FG 15-day ultimatum to suspend NBTE’s scheme of service



By: Austine Agbo Emmanuel, Kaduna

The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, (ASUP) Zone A has rejected the new scheme of service, (SOS) introduced to Polytechnics by the National Board for Technical Education, (NBTE)

This is as the Union said that the initiative is an intentional move by the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation and NBTE to sow discord within the Polytechnic sector.

Addressing Journalists during the Zonal Executive Officer’s Meeting of ASUP, beld in Kaduna on Thursday, the Zonal Coordinator, for ASUP, Zone A Dr. Abdulazeez Ibrahim Badaru disclosed that they have given Federal Government 15-day ultimatum to suspend the SOS otherwise the union will not hesitate to embark on a strike action.

Dr. Badaru who also condemned the preferential treatment given to Bachelor degrees over Higher National Diploma, (HND) in the appointment of Registrars and Bursars, stressed that the documents bias against HND undermines progress even as he noted that the Polytechnic should not discriminate against their products.

“The National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) released a document titled “‘Schem of Service for Polytechnics” which lacks inclusive stakeholder input, particularly from our union and stakeholders in the polytechnic sector.

“It diverges significantly from a
previously prepared document following extensive consultations and engagements that started since 2012, is seen as an intentional move by the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation and the NBTE to sow discord within the polytechnic sector. The current document is opposed unless all points of contention are addressed.

“The importation of sub-tertiary level qualifications, such as the National SkilIs Qualifications (NSQ), as obligatory prerequisites for the career advancement of academic staff within the polytechnic is deemed laughable.

“The NSQ lacks substantive value in enhancing the delivery of curricula at the tertiary level in polytechnics, serving as an undue burden without corresponding professional development. Consequently, we vehemently reject its inclusion as a mandatory criterion for academic staff career advancement.

“There is a concerning inconsistency in the entry points for Graduate Assistants, with the NBTE document lowering the bar for Bachelor degree holders while disadvantaging HND holders. Equivalent grades such as Second Class Lower and Lower Credit, should be required at the Graduate Assistant level to ensure fairness.

“The preferential treatment given to Bachelor degrees over HND qualification for the appointment of Registrars and Bursars is discriminatory. The document bias against HND holders undermine progress against this unacceptable practice. The Polytechnics should not discriminate against their graduates.

“We wish to stress that we studied the document thoroughly and we are committed to pursuit these issues to their logical conclusions. It is crucial to highlight that we have issued a 15-day ultimatum to the Federal Government effective from 8th July, 2024 to suspend the implementation of this rough work called scheme of service for the polytechnics or face diverse form of industrial action by our Union.” Badaru, said.

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ASUP calls for sack of NBTE Executive Secretary over controversial service scheme 



From Dennis Udoma, Uyo

The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), has called on the Federal Government to sack the Executive Secretary of National Board for Technical Education (NBTE), Prof Idris Bugaje for allegedly conspiring with the Head of Service of the Federation to introduce contrversial scheme of service which counteracts with the welfare of members.

ASUP Chairman, Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic Chapter, Ikot Osurua, Comrade Eteyen Uko said this in Uyo in a chat with newsmen on Thursday.

Uko, said ASUP would not back out on their position against the Head of Service of the Federation, Dr Folasade Yemi – Esan on the drafting of the new service scheme done in connivance with the Executive Secretary, asking for it’s reversal.

Uko expressed anger that the  NBTE Secretary  could not  defend  Academic Staff of Polytechnics  but rather conspired to spite the lecturers through  some vexatious clauses in the new service scheme adding that, the Executive Secretary  perpetuated the BSc and HND dichotomy whose bill to abrogate the disparity has gone through the first and second readings in the National Assembly.
ASUP chairman further explained that, the union will continue to kick against the new scheme of service because, while it takes the University Lecturers  18 years to become a professor; it takes the Polytechnic Lecturers 26 years to become a Chief Lecturer, which is equivalent to a university professor.

According to him, “There was a scheme of service since 1989 and later renewed in 2013 and 2019 respectively. Eventually, we saw another scheme just published by the Head of Service of the Federation Dr Folasade Yemi- Esan in collaboration with the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE).

“ASUP has kicked against that scheme of service in totality. Reason is that there are so many discrepancies and observations as far as the new scheme of service is concerned.

“The stakeholders in Polytechnics system were not carried along . The Head of Service just signed it as a document that was presented by the Executive Secretary of NBTE, Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics was not carried along and we kick against it.

“The drafting and approval of the new  scheme of service shouldn’t have been done by the Head of Service of the federation because she is not our employer and regulator of the Polytechnic education which is wrong”.

The ASUP chairman continued to enumerate the grey areas in the new service scheme for Academic staff of Polytechnics to include; splitting of the senior Lecturer level and elongation of the Lecturer cadre to 9 steps structure requiring a minimum of 26 years to reach the topmost level in the Polytechnic system.

” You know the system of Nigeria that you graduate at the age of 26 , it takes you 30 to 40 years of age to gain employment with the government and if you are employed as a Graduate Assistant,you can not attain the rank.of Chief Lecturer in the Polytechnic when you retired.

” Our retirement age is 65 years. So assuming you are employed at 40 , this means you can not be a Chief Lecturer.

” We are not struggling anything  with the University, our own is the Polytechnic sector and we are dealing with technological base . In the University system , it 3 years as a Senior Lecturer . Why do you we have  4 years in the Polytechnic system and you have to stay for years each as Lecturer 1& 2 .

He maintained that, NBTE Secretary scheming to suppress Polytechnic graduates which the National Assembly is trying to address through the bill before it.

” They don’t want to regard HND graduates as anything from what we have seen. But that does not mean that somebody that has first degree is better than the HND graduates.

“In this institution, we have been going for competition with the University students and we come out first ,second and third. They are university while we are Polytechnics with different regulatory bodies”.

Comrade Uko therefore, called on the federal government to set up National Polytechnic Commission like the university counterpart to address injustices done to Polytechnics system to save it from total collapse.

He said education should be inclusive not segregative by creating disparities among graduates.

“Although this is not part of the present struggle but We are agitating that the federal government should establish National Polytechnic Commission ( NPC).

“As a matter of urgency, the federal government and National Board for Technical Education (NBTE ) should suspend the controversial scheme of service to save the Polytechnic system from collapse as many will not want to neither be  students nor Lecturers in the Polytechnic system”, he said.

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Kwasu expels 175 students



The management of Kwara State University (KWASU), Malete, says it has expelled 175 students for various offences.

This is contained in a statement issued by the Director of  University Relations, Dr Saeedat Aliyu, on Tuesday.

The university management said that the expulsion approval followed the recommendations of the Students’ Disciplinary Committee, which held sittings between Oct. 2021 and March 2024.

The management said  the expelled students were penalised for offences ranging from examination malpractice, theft, using fake results to gain admission, assault, fraud, belonging to unregistered associations and possession of firearm.

”The management of KWASU wishes to reiterate its zero-tolerance for all acts of indiscipline as the institution stands firm on producing graduates, who are excellent both in character and in learning,” Aliyu said.

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