Police Charge 27 FUNAAB Students Over Violent Protest

FUNAAB, Police, Protest, Ogun, StateThe Ogun State Police Command has charged 27 students of the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta over the violent protest which resulted in the destruction of at least 10 vehicles and attack on a church.

The students were arraign on a 6-count charge which include arson, malicious damage of property, unlawful assembly and rioting, at the Isabo Magistrate Court in the state capital, southwest Nigeria.

Delivering his judgement on Friday, Magistrate Oriyomi Sofowora ruled that the students could only be bailed after satisfying the bail conditions.

He stated the conditions to include two sureties of which one must be a parent and a resident in Ogun State while the other must have property worth 100,000 Naira.

The President of the National Association of Nigerian Students, Ogun State chapter,  Seun Opaleye, said the accused were arraigned after seven of the 34 earlier arrested were found not culpable by the Police.

A drama ensued when one of the students, who was taken out of the Black Maria vehicle, expected to convey them to the Ibara Prison fainted.

This drew sympathy from on-lookers who alleged that the victim was not given the necessary attention he deserved at that moment.

Meanwhile, the Special Assistant to Governor Ibikunle Amosun on Youths, Mr Clement Olusegun, faulted the claims that one of the students was shot in the head by the Police, saying he witnessed the incident.

The injured student was said to have been discharged from the Federal Medical Centre in Abeokuta, where he was taken to after the incident.

He had since been transferred to the University College Hospital in Ibadan, the Oyo State’s capital.

Students Protest Fuel Price Increase In Jos

oilStudents under the auspices of National Association of Nigerian Students in Plateau State, North Central Nigeria embarked on a peaceful protest to express their displeasure on the recent increase in the pump price of premium motor spirit.

The students believe that the sudden increase has brought untold hardship on the citizens especially on the students resulting in high prices of commodities including books and other study materials at the various schools.

Student Union leaders from higher institutions in the state comprising of students union governments in the tertiary institutions, zonal executive officers as well as national executive members of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) were part of the rally under security personnel supervision.

Senate President, National Association of Nigerian Students, Ochai Odoh Thomas, led other students’ leaders in the protest accused the government of betraying the trust of Nigerian students by the sudden increase in the pump price.

President of the Student Union Government of Plateau State Polytechnic, Pius Tongman, criticised the government decision for not considering the plight of the students across the nation.

With the students agitation increasing every day, security agents need to redouble their efforts in controlling the protest so that it does not turn violent and hijacked by hoodlums while the students’ leadership should also be civil and organised in expressing their grievances on the increase in the pump price of petrol.

Petrol Price Increase: NANS Holds Peaceful Protest In Owerri

Benue-University-students-protest-fees-incrementThe National Association of Nigerian Students, Imo State Chapter, has staged a peaceful protest against the recent hike in the price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) also referred to as petrol by the Federal Government.

The youths in their numbers took to the streets of Owerri the capital of Imo State, causing heavy gridlock and carrying placards with various inscriptions.

Contrary To Campaign Promises

They expressed their support for the planned strike by the Nigeria Labour Congress against the increase of the price of PMS from 86.50 Naira to 145 Naira per litre.

The Labour union had issued the Federal Government a 4-day ultimatum to revert to the old petrol pump price of 86.50 Naira or risk a nationwide protest.

The ultimatum will expire on Tuesday midnight.

After the Nigerian government announced a new price band of 145 Naira per litre on May 11, the labour union kicked against the increase, saying it will resist it.

According to the protesting students the All Progressives Congress (APC) is delivering what is contrary to their campaign promises as regards the fuel price issue.

Recalling that the APC had promised to reduce the price of petrol to 40 Naira per litre during the campaigns, insisting that the increase was a plot by the Federal Government to cause untold hardship on the Nigerian masses.

The students during the protest also called on the Imo State government to resolve the lingering crisis between the government and Academic Staff Union of Universities, Imo State Chapter which they claimed had kept the Imo State University under lock and key for months, keeping students idle and non-productive.

Buhari Says Anti-corruption Fight Will Secure Youths’ Future

Nigerian YouthsPresident Muhammadu Buhari has assured Nigerian youths that the ongoing anti-corruption campaign would secure their future.

The Nigerian leader gave the assurance while addressing members of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), who marched to the Presidential Villa to pledge their full support for the anti-corruption campaign.

President Buhari spoke through his Special Adviser on Media and , Mr Femi Adesina.

He promised to do his best to place Nigeria well on the way to becoming the nation of their dreams.

The President’s spokesman said: “The youths would feel it, the adults will feel it and old people will feel it… and Nigeria will become the country of our dreams”.

Mr Adesina later received a document addressed to President Buhari from the NANS President, Comrade Tijani Usman Shehu and he promised that the President would look into their requests.

President Buhari had, during his campaign, reiterated his commitment to tackling corrupt practices in Nigeria, saying that ‘corruption will kill Nigeria if it (corruption) is not killed’.

Since he took over office on May 29, the anti-corruption campaign had become more biting with an anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, making several arrests.

 

Obasanjo Optimistic Of Nigeria’s Bright Future

Olusegun_ObasanjoA former Nigeria President, Olusegun Obasanjo, is optimistic that a brighter future awaits the socio-economic and political development of Nigeria, under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari despite the current challenges facing the oil-rich nation.

The former President made the observation on Friday while having a chat with the national leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students who paid him a courtesy call in his hilltop residence in Abeokuta, the capital of Ogun State.

While assuring Nigerians of his readiness to continue to work for the success of the country, former President Obasanjo, however, urged the citizens to play their parts in the Nigerian project, asking them to meaningfully criticise the administration where necessary

The leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students led by its vice President, Mr Oluwatosin Ogunkuade, was in Abeokuta to ask for the continuous leadership quality of the former president in the onerous task of national development.

NANS Urges Federal Government To Increase Polytechnic Education Funding

NANSThe leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has urged the Federal Government to increase funding of polytechnic education through the TETFUND special intervention.

The group made the call on Sunday in Owerri, the capital of  Imo State in south-east Nigeria while on a facility tour on Federal Government projects to the Federal Polytechnic Nekede in Owerri.

The National President of NANS, Comrade Tijani Usman, said that the association remained committed to supporting President Buhari-led Federal Government in fighting corruption, especially in the education sector.

Mr Usman said that polytechnic education was one of the key to sustainable growth and technological development of Nigeria.

The President reiterated that would not be business as usual for School Authorities who embezzle funds meant for school development by erecting kangaroo projects that do not have impact on the students.

While commending NANS for the visit, the management of the Federal Polytechnic Nekede, thanked the Federal Government for the special intervention fund which they said had gone a long way to help the school’s growth.

They, however, appealed to the government for more funding, as students from polytechnics were contributing immensely to the technological growth of country.

University Of Jos Resumes Academic Activities

Jos
University of Jos School Gate

The University of Jos, Plateau State, North-central region of Nigeria, has resumed its academic activities with the commencement of the second semester examinations.

Academic activities were disrupted by students’ demonstration late in 2014 and this resulted in the closure of the institution.

They had protested over increment in developmental charges. The protests became violent leading to destruction of lecture halls, administrative offices as well as hostel facilities.

The Students’ Union Government was also suspended.

Respite, however, came for the University of Jos students after two months of staying at home.

According to the resumption guidelines released by the School Registrar, Jili Dandam, all returning students must pay the sum of 6,000 naira each, as surcharges to cover cost of damages.

The students would as well sign an undertaking under oath, to be of good behaviour during their remaining period in the school.

The intervention of the leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) and other concerned citizens resulted in the re-opening of the school as well as lifting of the suspension on the Students’ Union Government.

Students Honour Fashola With Certificate Of Commendation

FasholaIn appreciation of his contributions to the improvement of education in the country, the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) in the South West Zone, on Monday, honoured the Governor of Lagos State, Babatunde Fashola, with a Certificate of Commendation.

Governor Fashola, who recently announced a reversal of the school fees in the Lagos State University (LASU) to its old structure, got the students’ applause for giving them a listening ear and allowing them the chance to contribute their quota to the growth of education by getting proposals from them, while they engaged the government during the recent students crisis.

The students, represented by their “Senators” from all the higher institutions in the South West Zone, said that the Governor struck them as the right leader to turn the country around through the creative way he recognized the import of their arguments that education could be run in a way as to encourage both the children of the rich and the poor to fulfill their gifts for education, without creating classes and division among them.

Governor Fashola received the recognition award at the Lagos House, Ikeja, and charged them to always reflect on how the quality of education can be improved. While making a commitment that the State Government would solve the problem of the issue of quality of education, he stated that the students also have a role to play in proffering solutions.

“I am also inquiring from you that how can we improve the quality of education? So that we can begin to plan how to produce our next sets of graduates that would produce our cars, give us electricity, perform heart and kidney surgeries here. It may look so far away but we are so closer to getting out and you are so close to taking over. We need to quickly fill that gap”, he stated.

On the Lagos State University (LASU) issue, Governor Fashola said, ”It was the students who asked for intervention in their school. All actions have consequences. When you sought the setting up of visitation panels, you don’t know what the result would be. What you did not realize is that you were asking outsiders to come. I hope the right lessons have been learnt. For us it is about making things better. You must ask yourself, is your method working? If they are not working, are you reflecting on changes?” he said.

Fashola expressed gladness that the school fees issue ended in the way it did, which exceeded the expectation of the students, adding that it was important to remind everyone of how it all started and that the State Government did not just wake up and decided to increase fees in LASU.

He said, “Part of the recommendation also was that there should be massive investment in infrastructure funding and part of it was that we should also increase school fees. It was not our initiative It was the consequence of the choice that you made.”

The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) Zone D Coordinator, Mr Sunday Ashefon, commended the Governor for surprising the students with his decision on the LASU fees because what the students were clamoring for was a reduction. He said, ”The fees payable in LASU now is not obtainable in any tertiary institution in Nigeria today.” He described Governor Fashola as another Awolowo of his generation.

 

Nigerian Students’ Committee To Monitor University Revitalisation

The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has set up an 18-man committee to monitor the disbursement of the 200 billion Naira (about 1.3 billion dollars) released by the Federal Government for the revitalisation of Federal Universities to ensure accountability of the fund.

The president of the association, Comrade Yinka Gbadebo, told reporters in Abuja on Sunday that the move was to ensure transparency and appropriate evaluation of the entire projects and programs which the funds had been dedicated to as enshrined in the signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).

“Keeping a diligent watch on the process and evaluating the extent of implementation will be beneficial to all students to avoid further rifts between the two parties in the future and to equally keep the lecturers on their toes,” Gbadebo said.

Dwindling Education Standard

The Federal government released the revitalisation funds last week, after five months of inactivity in the universities due to the Academic Staff Union of Universities’ strike.

Both the government and the university lecturers’ union signed an MoU that would ensure that both parties are committed to bringing the needed revitalisation of Nigerian universities to reality.

The standard of education in Nigerian universities has continued to dwindle due to neglect of the sector.

Efforts to resolve the issues in Nigeria’s education sector began in December 14, 2006, when the then Minister of Education, Dr. Obiageli Ezekwesili, inaugurated on behalf of the Federal Government, a negotiating committee headed by Mr. Gamaliel Onosode, to find a permanent solution to the issues in the educational system.

Five major issues were slated for resolution and discussion – funding, ACAREF (Academic Reform), University autonomy, condition of service of lecturers and university staff generally.

It was agreed that the Federal Government, States, private sector, the Educational Task Fund, the Petroleum Development Task Fund and alumni associations be involved in funding of public universities to enable the institutions get the necessary infrastructures in order to meet international standards.

A plan to spend 1.5 trillion Naira with a three-year rolling module – 2009-2011- was agreed on.

It was also agreed that 26 per cent of the annual budget should be spent on education.

On the issue of condition of service, the lecturers’ retirement age was also looked into and the retirement age was extended to 70 years.

Since then, the only aspect of the agreement that has been fully implemented is the increasing the retirement age of lecturers, a development that has led to continuous dwindling of education standard in Nigeria.

During the proposal of Nigeria’s 2013 budget, it was discovered that only 8.67 per cent of the proposed total budget of 4.92 trillion  Naira (about 31.5 billion dollars) was allocated to education, an amount that falls far below the UNESCO recommended allocation of 26 per cent.

Students Appeal To ASUU To Call Off Strike

Students of Kaduna state university have called on the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to have a rethink on its current industrial action to protest government’s refusal to implement the 2009 agreement it reached with the union and suspend the strike.

The students who spoke to Channels Television in Kaduna said the strike would affect the already disrupted academic calendar and therefore called on the union to consider university students in the country who they noted are no parties in their dispute with the federal government.

Kaduna state university ASUU branch chairman, Dr. Sadiq Abdu said although there were skeletal academic activities in the school on Tuesday, the lecturers would commence full industrial action starting from Wednesday. He said the university lecturers across the country resumed strike because of government’s insincerity.

But the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) Kaduna zone, said they are in total support of the industrial action by ASUU because government has failed to provide the basic infrastructure in the universities in the country which is one of the demands of the union.

Auto Crash Kills Student Unionists Travelling To Troubled University of Uyo

A ghastly motor accident involving a trailer and bus conveying executives of the National Association Of Nigerian Students (NANS) has left five persons dead, six injured.

The tragedy occurred Thursday morning along Ariam-Ikwuano local government area, shortly after the NANS executives made a brief stop at Micheal Okpara University of Agriculture situated just a few kilometres before Ariam.

It was gathered that the occupants of the ill-fated bus crash were 12 executives of NANS travelling to University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom state on a fact finding mission into the crisis rocking the institution which has led to death of some students and burning of some of the institution’s buildings.

The driver of the bus, NANS Senate President, Donald Onukaogu, and a student of Federal University Technology Owerri (FUTO), died on the spot with four others, while other five are critically injured.

The 11th person sustained a minor injury and the 12th person was lucky to escape unhurt.

On getting the news, the Governor of Abia state, Theodore Orji, visited the hospital where he met members of NANS.

He expressed his condolence to the student’s body and the family, while assuring them of every necessary assistance.

He cautioned drivers to limit their speed while driving on the highway.

The coordinator, Zone B of NANS, Chinonso Obasi, thanked the Governor for coming the hospital to sympathise with them.

NANS Protest Killing Of Nasarawa Students

Members of the National Association of Nigerian Students, NAN, have protested the alleged killing of four students of the Nasarawa State University during a protest by officers of the Nigerian Army.

The renewed protesters demanded that the Nigerian Army must produce the killers of the students.

Four students of the university who protested over the non-provision of basic amenities at the institution were allegedly shot by soldiers deployed to disperse the demonstrating students but the Nigerian Army has denied the allegation.

The student body who took their protest to the vicinity of the Nigerian Army headquarters in Abuja on Friday, promised to be confrontational if their demands are not met

Leading the protesting student in Abuja, the Senate President of NANS, Donald Onukaogu, demanded that the increasing spate of killings of students across the country must stop.

Reacting to the killing of the students, the director of army public relations, Brigadier General Ibrahim Attahiru had told a news conference earlier in the week that soldiers from the 177 Battalion in Keffi, only assisted other security agencies in quelling the violent protest embarked upon by the students.

The student body promised to confront the army if those behind the killing of the students are not fished out, as they demand justice for the death of their mates.