Parents of students of Madonna University, Okija, Anambra State have threatened to withdraw their children from the institution following detention of six students of the institution and a lecturer.
The media last week was awash of reports of school’s management detention of six students and a lecturer at the Awka prison since February.
The detainees were accused of expressing opinion on Facebook the institution considered damaging.
The media reports, the Nation gathered had generated public outcry including threats by some parents who thronged the university to withdraw their wards.
Speaking with the Nation, one of the parents, Christopher Onyejekwe, whose son was among the detainees, said he had visited the founder of the University, Rev Fr Emmanuel Edeh over ten times to beg for his son’s the release.
He however regretted that such appeals had fell on deaf ears.
He said, “Fr Ede arrested my son since February 19 till date, saying that he will not release them until they die in prison.
“I have approached Fr. Edeh to appeal to him. When the police arrested students, I went to Fr. Edeh 11 times and met him. On the 11th time, the only condition he gave me was to go and pray, which I did.
“After a while, I went to him with three prominent persons, knelt before him to beg him, but he said over his dead body that the children must surely die in prison.
“He added that if I like I should bring the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to come and beg him.
“That was how I stopped going to beg him. They continued to detain them in police custody for more than a month before they were taken to Awka Prison.”
Another parent who spoke in confidence, said the period of begging for the students’ release had gone, adding that the only option was to withdraw the child from the school.
She said, “There is tension in that school now. A management staff of the school reportedly slumped on Thursday, following mass request by parents and guardians to withdraw their children and wards from the school.
“Public opinion is against them and they will have no other option than to free those children and their lecturer because they did not commit any offence.
“We won’t beg anybody any more. We are ready to fight it out.”
The Vice President, national affairs of National Association Nigerian Students, Chidi Ilogebe disclosed that plans had been concluded to fulfill its threat of shutting down the university if the detained students and their lecturer were not released immediately.
He said, “There are so many developments on the matter. First, we want to perfect the bail conditions given to our detained members on or before Tuesday.
“The IPO had declined to recognised the sureties earlier produced by relations of the detained students, apparently acting on instruction from above.
“So, we are re-strategising to produce other sureties on or before Tuesday to ensure that our members are released.
“Certain people are of the opinion that our members will only be released on the next adjourning date which is July 2, but we are saying no to that because they were granted bail by the court since February.
” So, we shall perfect the bail conditions latest on Tuesday. If they fail to release our members that day, we will shutdown Madonna university as we stated in our seven-day ultimatum. No two ways about it”, the NANS leader stated.
The matter which was due for hearing at the Federal High Court, Awka on Tuesday could not hold due to the absence of the presiding judge, Justice Babatunde Quadri.
According to an 11-count charge preferred against the defendants, the prosecutor, Mr A.N. Obo, said the publications on the social media were injurious to the image of the proprietor and the institution.
He said the alleged offences were punishable under sections 27 (1) (b) and 24 (1) (b) of the Cyber Crimes (Prohibition, Prevention, etc) Act, 2015
IPPIS: ASUU Members Sneak To Register, Enrolment Hits 937,000
There are indications that some members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities are enrolling for the Integrated Personnel Payroll Integrated System contrary to the directive of the union .
Investigations by The PUNCH on Wednesday revealed that institutions where lecturers were registering for the IPPIS included the University of Calabar and the University of Nigeria , Nsukka.
ASUU had last month opposed the IPPIS despite the Federal Government ’s directive that any worker that failed to register for it would not be paid his December salary .
The union directed its members not to enrol for the IPPIS , which the Federal Government said was aimed at fighting corruption through payment of salaries to each employee ’ s bank account.
But ASUU wondered why the Central Bank of Nigeria , the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation , the Federal Inland Revenue Service and a few other agencies were not on the IPPIS .
But on Wednesday , the Federal Government said the agencies were not on the platform because they were revenue generating entities . It said 937 ,000 workers had registered for the IPPIS .
The IPPIS registration started in universities on November 25 and ends on December 7 .
UNN staff register
At the UNN , The PUNCH correspondent, who was in the institution , observed that workers were registering for the IPPIS , despite ASUU’ s opposition .
The PUNCH reliably gathered that some ASUU members had joined non -academic staff unions in the enrolment on both the Enugu and Nsukka campuses .
A worker of the university , who didn’ t want his name mentioned , told one of our correspondents that members of the Non -Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities , Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities and the National Association of Academic Technologists were the first to come out for enrolment before ASUU members started joining them .
Some UNICAL lecturers register
Also at UNICAL, it was gathered that some ASUU members had been sneaking to the IPPIS registration area to enrol for the scheme .
A source said, “ The exercise has been highly successful. Many lecturers have been sneaking into the venue to register . ”
There are isolated cases – UNICAL ASUU
When the Chairman of ASUU in UNICAL, Dr John Edor , was contacted , he said there were only few isolated cases .
He said, “ They are not sneaking . No ASUU member is sneaking . If the people are sneaking , I am not a witch to discover that. But I tell you on good authority that we have very high level compliance ( boycott ) . What you may find is a situation like Faculty of Agriculture where we have about 140 lecturers and only two lecturers defaulted . You have those isolated instances . On a general note, we are coasting away with about 98 per cent victory .”
Confusion in UNIPORT, security guards disrupt ASUU meeting
There was confusion at the Delta Park axis of the University of Port Harcourt on Wednesday as ASUU members were stopped from holding their congress inside their secretariat .
The meeting , which was slated for 2 pm ( Wednesday ) could not hold as the ASUU, UNIPORT branch secretariat was barricaded by some uniformed men suspected to be the institution ’s security guards.
The blocking of the entrance to the ASUU secretariat , it was learnt , forced over 150 members of ASUU, who came for the aborted meeting and other persons, who came to witness the situation , to be trapped on the road along the Delta Park section of the institution .
The situation had halted vehicular movement temporarily as motorists had to come out of their vehicles to find out why the road was blocked .
One of ASUU members , Dr . Sunday Edum , and a member of the National Youth Service Corps were said to have been arrested by security guards of the university and taken to Choba Divisional Police Station .
Both the lecturer and NYSC member were later released after several hours at the police station.
Recall that the UNIPORT authorities and the branch of ASUU had been at daggers drawn over the sack of a lecturer , Prof. Frank Uguimoh, just as a press conference organised by the union was disrupted last week Wednesday by a group of students .
A statement signed by ASUU , UNIPORT Branch Chairman , Dr . Austen Sado , the Secretary , Dr . O. F . Ndioho, and obtained by our correspondent , claimed that the disruption of the union ’s congress was masterminded by the university administration .
Reacting, UNIPORT spokesman, Dr William Wodi , dismissed the claim that there was terror on campus, adding that if there was any form of lawlessness , it was instigated by ASUU.
Wodi told our correspondent that the secretariat was locked up because both ASUU and a breakaway group from the union known as Congress of University Academics planned to hold meetings at the secretariat on the same day , adding that the vice chancellor was preventing a breakdown of law and order at the ASUU secretariat.
UNIPORT said that IPPIS officials in the university would end the registration of its staff on December 7, 2019 .
The Chairman of the University of Ibadan chapter of ASUU, Prof . Deji Omole , in a statement on Wednesday in Ibadan , stated that it was unfortunate that vice chancellors had become errand boys of the AGF .
Omole maintained that the union had made useful suggestions to the Federal Government but stated that Nigerian intellectuals would not be turned to errand boys .
Why CBN, NNPC are exempted – FG
Meanwhile, the Federal Government has explained why the CBN and the NNPC are excluded from the IPPIS . It , however, said the agencies migh be enrolled on the platform later .
The Director of the IPPIS , Olufehinti Olusegun , said this on Channels Television’ s Sunrise Daily programme on Wednesday .
Olusegun said this while reacting to complaints by ASUU t that the Federal Government was partial in its implementation of the IPPIS initiative by exempting the CBN , NNPC and other government agencies.
Responding to a question, Olusegun said, “ The President ’s directive was direct that all ministries , departments and agencies or institutions drawing their salaries from the consolidated revenue fund , which is a Federal Government account, are to key into the IPPIS .
“ The government knows that all agencies cannot be brought on the drawing board at the same time . But for those who draw their salaries and personnel costs from the consolidated revenue of the Federal Government , they must come on the drawing board.
“ For the CBN , FIRS and NNPC , they are revenue agencies and they live on cost of collection. They are revenue generating agencies and they don’ t draw from the consolidated revenue fund . So, it is left to the government on what to do next but it is a journey that just started . ”
He said so far, over 937 , 000 federal employees including the military were on the IPPIS .
The director said the initiative had been able to save billions of naira belonging to the government which had hitherto been entering private pockets.
However, the President of ASUU, Prof . Biodun Ogunyemi , argued that universities could not be categorised as a ministry , department or agency.
Ogunyemi said in the IPPIS blueprint , universities were not supposed to be captured in the scheme .
The ASUU President said IPPIS , if implemented, would affect the ability of universities to attract visiting professors .
He said, “ Just three weeks ago we were at the headquarters of the African Union in Addis Ababa , where scholars in the Diaspora came together to think of how best they could help revitalise higher education in Africa and a lot of case studies were presented .
“ The case of our late friend , Prof. Pius Adesanmi , who was until his death , the Director of African Studies in Carlton , Canada, came up for mention . This professor was a visiting professor to more than three universities in Africa.
“ In fact, the Director of African Studies in Legon , Ghana, recalled that Adesanmi was on their payroll as a visiting scholar and he would be visiting for at least three months and he would go back and he did that for more than five years. He did the same for two other universities in South Africa .
Malpractices: WAEC Withdraws 1992, 1993 Candidates’ Certificates
The West African Examinations Council has released the list of impounded certificates of candidates, who were believed to have engaged in malpractices during its examinations held as far back as December 1992 and 1993.
The council released the examination years and certificate numbers of the affected candidates, noting that the nature of their malpractices was impersonation.
Our correspondent sighted the list of indicted WAEC candidates as published in the weekly bulletin of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board released on Monday.
In the JAMB bulletin, WAEC identified the candidates as, “Ukaumunna C. December 1992 examination with certificate number, NGSP 0233613; Chinna H. December 1993 with certificate number, NGSP 0572427; Koffi E. December 1993, with number NGSP 0455669; and Oham J. December 1994, with certificate number, NGSP 0177271.”
Others are “Mbara G. December 2001, with certificate WNR 2248072; Ifo S. December 2001, with number NGWASSCP 1307367; Ugwu P. December 2005 with certificate number, NGWASSCP 4534182; Anene J. December 2008, with number, NGWASSCP 5505913; Ogbenna C. December 2011, with certificate number, NGWASSCP 06927486; and Nwangwu I. December 2014, with certificate number, NGWASSCP 8392056.”
JAMB noted that in order to avoid such impersonation during its Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, it was partnering the National Identity Management Commission to enforce candidates’ registration for the national identity number.
The board said, “In view of the cases listed JAMB’s partnership with NIMC is imperative. In order to have a seamless registration for the 2020 UTME, we have put machinery in place to test run the new registration regime under the joint platform of JAMB and NIMC using the NIN.
“The Registrar, Prof Is-haq Oloyede, sequel to this, therefore, directed members of staff in offices nationwide to participate in the trial registration which started on Friday, November 29, and is to end Tuesday, December 3. No fewer than 1,800 members of staff would be involved in the trial registration designed to assess the workability of the new registration regime.”
JAMB Twitter Handler’s Grammatical Blunder Got People Talking
Nigerians have reacted to a grammatical blunder made by the Twitter handler of Jamb.
The handler use the verb form of the personal pronoun “am” instead of “I’m” and Nigerians didn’t spare them.
See their reactions below
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