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The Academic Staff Union of (), has blamed the poor attention students get from lecturers to the poor learning environment across universities.

Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, National President of the association, made this known when he on the News Agency of (NAN), Forum in Abuja on Sunday.

Ogunyemi said that the learning environment in the 1980s and 1990s was quite different from what was currently obtained, stressing that the environment in most universities was no longer conducive for effective learning.

“First, I do not agree with you that they do not pay attention to their students, but, again, you can see that lecturers have hindrances in the discharge of their mandate.

“Lecturers are supposed to do three things – teach, conduct research and carry out community services.

“I have visited a lot of campuses; the environment is not conducive. In our days in the university, we had what we called clinic hours. I started that way in 1988.

“Clinic hours are when students could come freely into my and we will discuss their problems, academic and otherwise. It was possible because where I was working, we had stable power supply.

“Now, you will see that in some campuses, they will give you light during the office hours, and that is the end, and this clinic hour is best outside office hours.

“Lecturers are not routine ; lecturers too are under pressure in their offices. They do not have the comfort, they do not have the wherewithal to do their work and students’ populations is more than four times over.’’

Ogunyemi said that relating, communicating and getting to know the students had become difficult as a of the large population.

According to him, students oftentimes hide under this situation and may not even come to class which makes it difficult for lecturers to track them.

He also highlighted inadequate laboratory and library facilities as some other major hindrances to effective learning.

“So, you find that each time ASUU talks about the universities, these are issues we are trying to track and we bring them to the attention of government.

“That is even now, we were having a regime of negotiation with the government team led by Dr Wale Babalakin, which was truncated at some point.

“That is why we are trying to engage the issues of funding of universities, universities are now grossly underfunded.

“We are also trying to talk about the conditions of service.

“The fourth area we are engaging is the enabling environment for academics to do their work. I believe academics in Nigeria are still doing their best within our environmental circumstances.

“That is why you still see our products going to universities abroad and still excelling.’’

He noted that the sector had the capacity to breed quality products regardless of the environment, and urged lecturers to give students the needed support.

Ogunyemi emphasised the need for further negotiations with the Federal Government on funding and the provision of adequate learning environment and materials for the development of the sector.

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Abass Sulaiman Adegoke, well known as Adegoke is a student of Federal Polytechnic Ede studying Civil Engineering, He is a media enthusiast, loves traveling, and has a special interest in personal development.

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Education

Revelations as JAMB stops admission into University of Abuja

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Revelations as JAMB stops admission into University of Abuja 72160f3a jamb logo 1024x576

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has confirmed that the ongoing admission of students at the of Abuja (UNIABUJA) has been halted over alleged infractions.

An Economic Confidential investigation, published on Sunday, showed that the management led by Vice Chancellor Professor Abdul-Rasheed Na’Allah overlooked the Admission Committee of the University and allegedly contracted the admission process.

The development caught the attention of JAMB, which ordered the university to suspend the 2019/2020 admission process for not meeting its guideline of uploading all admissions on the Central Admission Processing System (CAPS).

The embattled VC, Na’Allah, was said to have addressed a press conference recently where he explained that the usual process was jettisoned over ‘irregularities’.

Under normal circumstances, the university regulations provide that admissions of students be handled by the Admission Committee which is headed by a chairman.

An academic staff, who affirmed that the team had since been moribund, said: “The committee is less functional; the normal practice of admitting students at Departments has been abolished. The 2019/2020 admission process has been contracted to a private company contrary to university practice”.

Checks revealed that UNIABUJA Acceptance Fee for a newly admitted student which was N4,500 is now N30,000.

Furthermore, the institution, which never charged a fee for collection of Original Certificate after graduation now charge N30,000 – believed to be higher than fee applicable in any state university in .

Findings also revealed that graduates currently line up in large numbers at the UNIABUJA Convocation Square for collection of their certificates after the management threatened to increase the amount at the expiration of one-week period.

The university management also allegedly reversed the existing Senate decision on examination results. The rule states that results from Departments be forwarded to the Senate through the Senate Business Committee within six weeks after the semester examinations.

However, the new rule, which has not been ratified by the Senate, expects lecturers to turn in students’ results 10 days after the end of the semester examinations.

Senate members, in their protest, had described the order as impracticable, warning that such would lead to allocation of marks to students in an effort to beat the deadline.

Each lecturer in Humanities Faculty currently handles between 400 to 700 scripts depending on the course, while a lecturer in Management Sciences marks between 1,000 to 2,000 scripts depending on the course.

This led to a resolution by UNIABUJA Academic Staff Union of University () that none of its members would comply with the 10-day period for results submission. They insisted that the ratified Senate rule of 6 weeks stands and that the union will not honour an unapproved decision.

Additionally, the of the Vice Chancellor has allegedly taken over the issuance of coupons for about 6,000 bed spaces in student hostels, against the normal practice in which the VC only has a percentage of the available accommodation. The Student Affairs that is statutorily responsible for the issuance has allegedly been sidelined.

UNIABUJA Deputy Registrar, Habib Yakoob told Economic Confidential that all allegations were unfounded.

He added that some staff were afraid of the ongoing restructuring which has turned the table against those who were used to “business as usual practice.

“I am not aware of any memo from JAMB suspending our admission process because of irregularities. But I can assure you that those who volunteered information to you are afraid of the new order because they are unarguably beneficiaries of the old order”, Yakoob said.

JAMB Head of Information, Dr Fabian Benjamin, confirmed the sanction slammed on UNIABUJA.

He reiterated that the examination board has the mandate to correct any lapses detected in the admission process of any university.

“This is a directive from the Honourable Minister of that any irregularity on admission process must be reversed and that the University of Abuja is not an exception”, Benjamin stated.

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Education

UTME 2020: JAMB withdraws licenses of 11 centres, gives reasons

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UTME 2020: JAMB withdraws licenses of 11 centres, gives reasons 72160f3a jamb logo 1024x576 1

The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has withdrawn licences from 11 centres for charging candidates exorbitant amount in the ongoing 2020 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME) registration.

Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, Registrar of the board, made this known in Abuja on Tuesday, at an interactive session with stakeholders.

The News Agency of (NAN) reports that the stakeholders comprises – the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corp (NSCDC), banks, E-transact, Digital Partner Network, Interswitch and other service providers.

Oloyede said that the proliferation of tutorial centres was a major concern as most of the centres engaged in fraud and corruption, during registrations and examinations.

Oloyede said that charging above the stipulated N4,700 for the 2020 UTME registration was illegitimate and would only destroy the nation; as it was an act of fraud and corruption.

He said that the exorbitant amount could have negative effects on the nation as well as having effects in destroying the system.

“Many people make illegitimate money from the examination and we will be destroying the nation, if we don’t get things right.

“Prior to 2018, we sell form for N5,000; but the federal government considers so many things and felt the money was much and in 2018, Muhammadu Buhari decided that the cost should be slashed; which brought the cost to N3,500.

” Also, prior to this time, there were unscrupulous people selling as high as N10,000. We now democratised the sale of the forms, to make it available so that it will not be possible for those selling to hoard the forms.

“We felt the banks are overcrowded so we decided to expand the sales outlet, to bring in mobile money operators to cover all the registered banks.

“The effects of the expansion is that some people are still penetrating the banks, thereby increasing the cost of the sale of form, ” he said.

Oloyede said that the board was magnanimous enough to pay the sum of N210 as commission for each of the forms sold, to about 2 million candidates nationwide, saying extorting the candidates was unjust.

He added that the board was working closely with the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), to ensure that any agent who sold above the prescribed fee was brought to book.

He, therefore, called on NSCDC to assist in arresting any erring centre while also calling on candidates to report any centre involved in the act, to commandants in their various states.

He also said that the board, in a bid to eradicate the problems and as well as to ensure tracking, had directed its agents selling forms to ensure they have the National Identity Number (NIN).

The registrar listed some of the centres whose licences were withdrawn as: Federal Polytechnics, Mubi; Adamawa; Adazi-Nnukwu ICT/CBT for selling forms at N5,000, Emkenlyn Computers, Nnaemeka Secondary School Anambra.

Others were: New Kings and Queens Bayelsa, for selling at N5,500; Brightfield Secondary School Delta, for selling between N6,000 and N8,000; A-Pagen Consolidated Port Harcourt, for selling at N5,000 and Influential School Port Harcourt, for selling at N6,000.

NAN also reports that the cost of the registration is N3,500, cost of materials is N500 and N700 for the CBT centres; totalling N4,700.
Meanwhile, the Commandant General, NSCDC, Mr Abdullahi Muhammadu, urged the board to limit the tutorial centres in the country, while making sure that lists of certified tutorial centres were revealed to reduce infractions, as it relates to examinations.

Muhammadu also called on commandants in the various states, to make integrity their watchword, in order not to betray the confidence the board have in them as well as Nigerians.

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