Ogun Govt Calls For Sustained Sensitization On Ebola Virus Disease

AmosunThe Ogun state government has called for an increased and sustained sensitization amongst teachers and pupils  on the Ebola Virus Disease, as pupils in public primary and secondary resume for the 2014/2015 academic session.

This call was made by the state Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Mr. Segun Odubela while representing Governor Ibikunle Amosun at a one day health workshop  organised by the Ogun state chapter of the Nigeria Union of Teachers, (NUT)

The teachers where drawn from public primary and secondary schools in the twenty Local Government Areas of Ogun state, to be a part of the health talk on the Ebola Virus Disease in order to protect themselves and the pupils in their care at their various schools.

Although teachers were taken on what they need to know about the Ebola virus, but the occasion however provided another opportunity for them to make  some demands which they asked the government to as a matter of urgency.

Olabisi Onabanjo University Reopens

OOUThe Governing Council of Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye in Ogun State, has ordered the immediate reopening of the university.

Lectures are to start on Monday, September, 29, 2014 to continue the suspended 2013/2014 academic session.

The university was closed by the management to forestall breakdown of public peace as a result of students’ negative reaction to the announcements by the State Government reducing the university fees.

According to a statement by the Head, Corporate Affairs Division, Vice-Chancellor’s Office, Niyi Oduwole, in 2008, the Students’ Union Government signed an agreement with the then State Government to increase fees by 20 percent annually.

However, in response to recent students’ demand for a downward review by 40 percent of the current fees, the State Government reduced the fees by about 40 percent and, in some cases, down to 60 percent as well as abolished the dichotomy between indigenes and non-indigenes.

This new arrangement was to start in the 2014/2015 session since there was no budgetary provision for the short fall in the current year’s financial appropriation.

However, students demanded lower fees and its immediate implementation.”

He stated further that this reopening “follows an agreement between the university management and the Students’ Union Government accepting the new fees and the commencement date of 2014/2015 session.

All returning students are expected to sign an undertaking to be of good behaviour while an investigating panel shall be set up to look at the immediate and remote causes of the disturbances and suggest ways of preventing such in the future.”

While noting that the panel may also recommend appropriate sanctions for anyone that might have violated his matriculation oath, the school management advised all returning students to check the university website for details of fees payment guidelines for the session.

Govt’s Failed Promise of 50% Tuition Fees Reduction Caused OOU Protests – Students’ Union

oou leaderThe President of the Olabisi Onabanjo University Students’ Union, Ifade Olusegun, has explained that the protest by the students was in reaction to the State Government’s failure to keep to their promise of 50% reduction of school fees as promised in 2011.

This is in line with the recent protest by the students over the 10% reduction of tuition fees announced by the State Government.

He said that the current fees being paid by OOU students ranged from N134,000 to N305,000, making the school the highest paid government school, asides the private universities in the country.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Mr Olusegun explained that the tuition fees increment was done before the current administration and in 2011, during electioneering, Governor Amosun promised a 50% reduction but he later did a 10% reduction, leaving the students to pay the remaining 40%.

The Students’ Union President stated that due to the high fees, about 2,000 students, in 2013, took a leave of absence to go and work in order to afford the fees, with some of them unable to return.

He noted that before the increment of fees, the students were paying between N40,000 and N70,000, adding that the Students’ Union had written series of letters to the government for a review of the high fees but to no avail.

The Union, according to him, then declared a two-day protest with a briefing on August 6, after which he was invited with his team to meet with the government.

He further noted that after three meetings with the government, a 10% reduction was announced without an agreement.

“If the government had the intention of a 10% reduction then they should not have invited us to the table of negotiation before going to the media,” the Union President said, maintaining that their demand was for the remaining 40% reduction to be implemented for the 2014/2015 academic session.

The Union President also said that OOU was not the only school in Ogun State asking for a reduction of fees from the State Government, but that they, in addition to this, had the peculiar issue of being the only school still in the 2013/2014 academic session.

However, the Commissioner for Education in Ogun State, Segun Odubela, who joined the conversation via telephone, insisted that the Olabisi Onabanjo University students were the only ones protesting in the state.

He also argued that it was not the only school still running the 2013/2014 academic session, contrary to what the Student Union leader had earlier claimed.

The Commissioner maintained his earlier stance during a previous interview on Channels Television that the Students’ Union leader and 9 other leaders were part of the meeting where the 10% reduction was decided.

He, however, added that the reduction, as announced by the State Government, would take effect in the 2014/2015 academic session.

OOU Protest: Students Not Satisfied With Reduction – Commissioner

ogun commissionerThe Ogun State Commissioner for Education, Segun Odubela, says that the violent protest by students of Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU) was due to the recent reduction of school fees which would take effect for the 2014/2015 session.

He noted that the protest started after the reduction of the school fees and not before the reduction by the government, adding that the Student Union was present at the briefing.

Speaking via the telephone on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily, the Commissioner explained that the school fees had been increased by the past government of the state, and when the new governor got into power, he assured the students that there was going to be a reduction.

According to him, the Governor Ibikunle Amosun-led government fulfilled this promise and reduced the school fees by 10% and later “reduced by almost 50%”, a decision the student felt was not good enough.

He stated that there was a percentage reduction across board and added that “this deduction is going to cost the government over two billion naira.”

The Commissioner also mentioned that there were some universities in the state that still pay between 8,000 to 12,000 naira as tuition fees. He added that Ogun State has the higher number of institutions compared to Lagos State and the reduction, as approved by the State Government, was fair enough.