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UNIABUJA ASUU declares strike to be sustained

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), University of Abuja branch, on Tuesday stated that the Federal Government has not done anything to end the union’s ongoing strike.

Consequently, the Union declared that the strike will be sustained.

This was made known by the Union’s branch chairman, Dr Kassim Umaru at the end of its Congress, held at the University’s Mini Campus in Gwagwalada on Tuesday.

Kassim asserted that the Congress deliberated on issues around the strike and vehemently pronounced and reject the offer presented by the federal government, saying that the National Executive Council would meet at the end of the four weeks ultimatum to take its decision.

He said, “As far as we are concerned, the federal government has not done anything to our various demands.

“The federal government should tell the Nigerian public what they have done. The two committees that were set up, the Nimi Briggs committee was set up, the Jubrin committee was set up and these committees had their recommendations.”

Kassim who reacted to the ‘no work, no pay’ policy as stated by the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, said the ILO and the 1981 trade Union act were very clear on that.

“Our salaries are always negotiated, it is not something you feel you can pay us, it is something that you have to sit down to talk and agree that you can pay us.

“As far as we concerned, our job is different from any other civil servant’s; it is the job you are going back to do, you are not paying for an hour you are paying for the job we have done, so it is their responsibility to pay us and if they said they are not paying us, it is a joke taken too far.

“As it is, they have not called our union and Nigerians should know that we have not been called, no invitation to our union and all that we know is the strike continues.”

The Union’s branch chairman while commenting on the reports that the federal government had approved another N100 billion for the university unions as part of the 2009 agreement, Umaru said all these were being said in social media and newspapers.

“Is there any document to our union? We should begin to ask them these questions. The students will have to be patient, it is a fight we have to do once and for all and it is a fight for the future of unborn children.

“We have no alternative than to do what we are doing and we must do it so that we can compete with the external world.

“In the entire world today, nobody jokes with education. If you are talking of economy, you are talking of cultural and social aspects, you must invest in education. No single country jokes with education like the way Nigerians are doing.

“The Union has a structure on how it takes decisions and at the end of the expiration of the ultimatum on Sunday, the needful will be done,” he added.

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Sanwo-Olu to unveil Eko Cares today

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Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu will today flag off the various interventions deployed to lessen the burden of Lagosians amid the economic hardship.

The interventions – in transportation, education, health and agriculture – are coming under the umbrella of EKO CARES.

The fuel subsidy removal sparked a rise in cost of living. Mr Sanwo-Olu announced a 50% cut in fares on all government transport platforms on February 8, 2024. After a review of the situation, the fare slash was reduced to 25%. For six weeks, the Ounje Eko Sunday market that signalled the reduction of food by 25% has been running. Civil servants from levels one to 14 were asked to work thrice a week. A N35,000 wage award was also given to all civil servants.

About 15,000 women from all the 20 local governments and 35 Local Council Development Areas got N50,000 each to support their businesses. Besides, Mr. Sanwo-Olu announced free delivery for expectant women in all government hospitals, among other initiatives.

To drive the initiatives, the Governor set up a non-partisan Special Dispensation Advisory Council of eminent Nigerians, including rights activists, religious leaders, a youth representative and opposition party chieftains. It is chaired by Mr. Governor; Deputy Governor Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat is alternate Chairman.

Details of other interventions will be unveiled today at a ceremony, which will take place at the Governor’s Office in Alausa, Ikeja

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Nigeria’s future lies in your hands — Bauchi Gov tells corps members

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Rauf Oyewole, Bauchi

The Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed has said that greatness and future of Nigeria will be determined by the youths, particularly the members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).

The Governor said this at the Wailo Orientation Camp of NYSC during the swearing-in of the newly posted Batch A stream II 2024, on Tuesday.

Mohammed, who was represented by the Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Mohammed Salis Gamawa, said, “I implore you to take with utmost seriousness the nation’s clarion call to serve with greater dedication and commitment. The future of this country lies in your hands.”

Mohammed enjoined them to cherish his commendation and become a catalyst for change in the orientation camp and during the entire service year. He further urged them to take with utmost seriousness the noble call and dedicate themselves toward achieving the Scheme’s goal of national unity and development.

“The good people of Bauchi State appreciate and understand the objectives and philosophy of the NYSC. In view of this, we have resolved to join hands with you in every way possible to ensure the success of the Scheme in the State.”

Also, the Bauchi state Coordinator of the NYSC, Mrs Rifkatu Yakubu, warned all the corps members across the country that any act of indiscipline would not be tolerated. According to her, any corps member found indulging in any form of indiscipline would be decisively dealt with in accordance with NYSC by laws.

She said, “You must equally obey all camp officials as they are your guardians. Indiscipline is not tolerated here and I assure you that if you are law abiding you will have a very fruitful and enjoyable camping exercise.

“On our part, we pledge to do our utmost best to ensure that you experience the regimented nature of camp throughout the duration of the orientation course and the entire service year.”

Yakubu commended Governor Bala Mohammed for his approval of the renovation and repairs of damaged camp facilities and the release of funds to augment feeding of corps members for the orientation exercise.

She said that the corps members would be given the opportunity to serve in the various committees set up for the smooth running of the camp. This, she believed, would give them practical experience in administration and a chance to contribute to decisions that affect them.

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Information Minister urges religious leaders, traditional leaders to champion awareness on nutrition

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The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, has appealed to faith-based leaders and traditional rulers to lend their voices in advocating for policies prioritising nutrition and access to nutritious food for their communities and followers.

The Minister made the call in Abuja on Tuesday at a one-day high-level dialogue on nutrition with faith-based leaders and traditional rulers held in the State House.

Idris, who said access to nutrition food, is not just a matter of sustenance but a fundamental human right of all citizens, decried the situation where malnutrition is afflicting millions of Nigerians including children.

“It is agonising that millions of our fellow citizens continue to suffer from malnutrition, depriving them of the opportunity to live healthy and productive lives.

“Therefore, I appeal to each of you gathered here today to seize this moment as an opportunity to catalyze change within your communities. Let us join hands across religious and cultural divides and unite in our pursuit of a healthier and more prosperous nation.”

The Minister said the launch of the awareness campaign on nutrition with faith-based leaders and traditional rulers as the vanguard, would surely make an impact given their tremendous influence that extends far beyond the confines of their respective congregations and Emirates, kingdoms, and chiefdoms, especially in shaping the fabric of the society.

The event, which was held at the instance of Vice-President Kashim Shettima, brought together religious leaders, traditional rulers, representatives of multilateral institutions, development partners, and policymakers to brainstorm and strategize on the awareness campaign for nutrition.

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