Our Working Conditions Are Poor and Deplorable-Oyo Teachers

As Teachers, on Thursday, all over the world celebrated the World Teachers day, those in Oyo state have insisted that their working conditions were very poor and deplorable.

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The Teachers, who stated that  the thoughts of their unpaid salaries, have overshadowed any room for  celebration,  however acknowledged that the fact that they were still alive was a good reason to give praises to God.

They made reference to the deteriorating state of schools and the unfriendly environment , they work, as factors that have further affected their morale negatively.

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At the Teachers House, Oluyole estate venue, of the celebration with theme ”Teaching in Freedom,  Empowering Teachers” in Oyo state, the state executive of the Nigeria Union of Teachers(NUT)executive, secretariat staff, executives of the 33 Local Government chapters of the NUT in the state and  the representative of the state Governor, the state Commissioner for Education, Prof. Adeniyi Olowofela and other invited guests formed the bulk of those who attended the programme.

The state Chairman of the NUT, Comrade Niyi Akano was conspicuously absent, even as some of those in attendance discussed his recent retirement from service.

In his remarks, the secretary of the NUT in the state, Comrade Waheed Olojede maintained that Teachers in the country deserved better treatment.

‘’The declaration of 1966 arose from the meeting of the Ministers of nations, who decided to draw attention of the entire world to the importance of Teachers and the teaching profession and they have come to realize  from that meeting that teaching is the mother of all other professions, and that a Teacher is a moulder, is a builder and so they deserve to be recognized, they deserve to be celebrated and of course they deserve adequate remuneration corresponding to their statuses’’.

” I want to say that elsewhere in some other countries of the world Teachers are taken as some Lords, who must be worshiped, who must be celebrated and who must be given the right quantum of remuneration. But  it is surprising and worrisome here in Nigeria, that Teachers are seen as mere instruments, who must be used and discarded with,  what they experience or go through, in the hands of  a very few, who have today, risen to positions of authority, you now see Teachers becoming objects of neglect, objects of discrimination, objects of starvation and objects of ridicule, which is quite unfortunate.

Comrade Olojede called on Government at all levels to key into the declaration made by the Ministers of nations, by giving Teachers adequate attention and remuneration.

About Attitude              About Behaviour              About Values

 

 

 

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33 Local Governments in Oyo are Comatose-NULGE

NULGE 1

A few days ago, Teachers in Oyo state under the umbrella of the Nigeria Union of Teachers(NUT)Oyo state council organized a rally to oppose the clamor for Local Government autonomy in the country.  In this interview with Federationews2day, the President of the  state branch of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees(NULGE), who also double as the Vice Chairman of the state council of the  Nigeria Labour Congress(NLC) Comrade Bayo Titilola-Sodo speaks on this and the current situation of things in Local Governments in the state. Excerpts :

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Workers in the 33 Local Governments of Oyo state have expressed worry over the  non payment of their salary arrears, they blame this on the Memorandum of Understanding signed by the executive of  the state branch of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees(NULGE) and the state Government on percentage salaries. What is your reaction ?

There is no time that the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees has entered into a separate agreement with  since we came on board The agreement that has covered us up to date, is the agreement with the Nigeria Labour Congress, Joint Negotiating Council and the Trade Union Congress, signed.  We are under the umbrella of the NLC, so whatever agreement the NLC signs covers us. I am the Vice Chairman of the NLC  in the state. So the labour movement in Oyo state signed this agreement with government and it is expressly stated that we would not take percentage payments, it is expressly stated that we would always take full salaries, it is expressly stated that where there is no sufficient funds, they should start paying from levels  on e, and will come up when the next payments comes and will go up and up like that until a month’s salaries are fully paid, rather than paying percentages  in any month for that matter.  But unfortunately, some of these Local Governments in collaboration with some of the people now complaining, we are going against the content of the two agreements, so they w ere colluding to pay themselves percentage  salaries. Where I work, which is Ibarapa Central Local Government, we have never paid  percentage salaries, we’ve always maintained, where there is insufficient funds, to start from level one, maybe to stop at level 7,  wherever the funds gets to, and when the next  funds come we pay the topmost levels. But where the funds are sufficient, we just pay everyone a full month’s salary at once, which is the case in the last two months. So, there is no time NULGE or the umbrella  under which NULGE operates, the NLC entered into any  agreement with government to pay percentage salaries.

The state Government is laying off  Local Government workers who have questionable certificates, what is NULGE doing about this ?

The exercise started last year with the verification of the WAEC and NECO certificates of workers,  and the Government came out with thousands of names alleging their certificates  to be fake or forged,  came out with the list and dismissed such staff  summarily an insisted that each staff should approach the court individually. And labour  took the matter up and a committee was set up,  my humble self is the chairman, up till today the committee still sits and we requested every member of staff,  sure of the authenticity  of their certificates to come before the committee, we collected their names, made our own, made our own independent investigation and requested  them to verify from the examination body and write a letter to the Head of Service and I can assure you that over 80 per cent of those people that came before us, have been reinstated, that action has  shown that the government has  reversed from its former position that the people should go to the courts to seek justice, secondly it is implied that the consultant is incompetent to carry out the job, because the letters from the examination bodies, authenticating these certificates were again passed to the same consultant, who now agreed that it was a mistake and that the certificates were genuine, that shows incompetence, it show that  he does not know his onions, it shows he did not do a thorough job and therefore on that ground the government should have decommissioned that consultant, the consultant should have been relieved of that assignment and if the government is still interested in continuing with the verification, to appoint a more competent consultant who will do a more thorough job, but unfortunately, the government continues to use these consultants, who does shoddy assignment and that has led to the issue of the Trade Test Certificates. NULGE has requested all their members affected by this issue to go the way we handled the earlier matter, bring their matters before us at NULGE office and it would be taken up. But as we speak,   no member off staff, none of them has been served a letter to that effect, but we have heard, we even heard that some names were pasted on the notice board, but you don’t relieve people of their jobs through notice boards, you write them individual letters terminating their appointments on whatever grounds.

Teachers in Oyo state have held a rally to protest against Local Government autonomy, what is the position of NULGE ?

Unfortunately, I waited  and waited for a rebuttal or a refutal of that story by the relevant  that is the NUT and its leadership and I have not seen any, therefore it is safe to believe that indeed their rally was against Local Government autonomy, I think their rally was misdirected, the issue of Local Government, what is their reason ? They claim that  when the payment of salaries  of Teachers was put under the administration of Local Governments about 25 years ago they suffered a lot of hardships, that was 25 years ago and the issue of Local Government autonomy transcends  matter of salary payments. I want them to know that  their salaries been paid by SUBEB, is from Local Government funds, through the Joint Account Allocation Committee(JAAC), if they now know this, why are they trying to misinform the public that their salaries should not be put under Local Government administration. There is no Local Government that insists on taking up the responsibility of the payment of Teachers salaries, in fact the constitution provides that we should participate in Primary education, and if we should participate, why is that the total salaries of Teachers is now been paid with Local Government funds, with the state contributing nothing, so we would like to state that the payment of their salaries should taken up by the state, so that we can participate and determine the percentage of participation, however they are saying no to Local Government autonomy is incredible because the matter of  Local Government autonomy is about development in Nigeria, it is about development at the grass roots, it is about service delivery at the third tier of government, which is the tier of government closest  to the people,  which is the tier of government easily accessible to the people. How many citizens of any state can work into the Governors office ? How many citizens of any state can work into the Commissioner’s office ? But the Chairman’s office  is freely accessible in all Local Governments, you know his Father’s house, you know his house, you know wives, you know his children, you know his relations, you know where to report him and you can mobilize yourselves to go to his office to lay down your facts, our roads require grading, we require culverts,  we require bridges, we want schools built , it is Local Governments that can provide all these services.  As we speak now in Oyo state all Local Governments are comatose, they have not been able to discharge their functions to the people, they cannot render the dividends of Democracy, which they all promised us, why ? , because there is paucity of funds, their funds is being cornered somewhere before getting to the Local Governments and therefore the Local Governments cannot grade roads, they cannot provide and  a number of these Teachers who have cars can no longer drive to the front of their houses, because Local Governments can no longer grade roads.  So, I don’t know the correlation between Local Government autonomy and the payment of Teachers salaries and why they think that Nigeria should not develop, they are in tandem with the idea that the public funds should be continue to be mismanaged, diverted and stolen, under the guise of paying their salaries, this clearly shows to me, that the leadership of the NUT has been collaborating to divert, mismanage and steal  Local Government funds in Nigeria, because the instrument, through which Teachers salaries are paid, SUBEB, is manned by retired Teachers, you cannot be the chairman of SUBEB, if you are not a Teacher, you cannot be a full time or part time commissioner of SUBEB, if you are not a Teacher, you cannot even be a Permanent Secretary or Executive secretary in SUBEB, if you are not a Teacher, it means they don’t want that route through which they have been collaborating to steal Local Government money to be blocked, that  is why they are not just talking about their salaries, but they are kicking against Local Government autonomy. What are the components of Local Government autonomy that we are clamoring for, one is political autonomy, you can see that in Oyo state elections have not been held in Local Governments in  Oyo state for 10 years, when you don’t elect people, who is now representing the interests of the electorate,  of the citizenry and of that constituency. Is it the kind of person they want to govern them that is governing them  ? Even when elections are held at all, the party in power at the state level clear all the seats, the chairmanship seats including all the councillorship seats, in Oyo state we  should have 33  chairmen and at least 330 councillorship seats. They will claim that the Government at the state level has won all those wards and Local Governments which is impossible, we know that does not reflect the true position of things are the grass roots. They should scrap state Independent Electoral Commissions, let the Independent National Electoral Commission conduct the elections, that will be free and fair and reflect  the true position of things at that level. Secondly , we are talking about financial autonomy, with financial autonomy, the Local Government funds would come to them directly, and you can now hold them responsible, even if the payment of Teachers salaries, remains their responsibility. In 1992/93, there were no EFCC, no ICPC, there are now several anti-graft bodies and the chairmen and Councillors don’t have immunity,  it is the Governors who have immunity, if any chairman should mismanage or divert, it is just one month he would do it, and he would be reported right here in Oyo state, we have an EFCC in Iyaganku, here in Ibadan, so he would be reported to the EFCC, these organizations were not available 25 years ago, when they claimed to have been shortchanged. Therefore, we should be building institutions that would be in the interest of Democracy in  Nigeria, that would be in the interest of the citizenry of Nigeria. Institutions that would ensure at the grassroots and ultimately across the length and breath of our country, Nigeria. Thirdly, we are also talking of administrative autonomy, these Chairmen and Councillors when they are elected, at least in Oyo state where I reside, I know   the spending  limits of the Chairman, his Vice and 10 Councillors , 12 elected people, their spending limits, is N500,000 since 1991, can you imagine a project  you could  carry out with N500,000 when the cost of a fairly used car was N30,000, so what you can ow do with N500,000, when there is no fairly used car that you can get for N500,000. But it has remained static that way, is that Democracy ?  Are those people been held accountable for their funds, someone else is managing the funds, they are just there as figure heads, whereas there spending limits is N500,000, someone who is now appointed, who was not elected by anybody would have an approving limit of N5 million, is  that fair  ? is that just ? is that Democracy ? is that accountability ? Therefore we clamor for administrative autonomy, let them be able to decide, they are the representatives of their people, let them be able to decide, that  it is on this project we want to expend our resources, we want to build bridges, we want to classrooms, if need be, we want to build markets if need be, and they should not be constrained by someone who sleeps in an air condition  office hundreds of kilometers away, who has never been to that locality, who does not know their needs in that locality, to take the decisions on their behalf, these are the things we seek for and we know that they are admirable things to seek for, for Nigerians, our situation is in tandem, and we have taken  up the gauntlet, because there is no one to speak for the ordinary Nigerians,  the ordinary Nigerians reside in the Local Governments, they know us, because we  work closely with the, we know where the shoes pinches and we have taken up this responsibility on their behalf and we believe that this time we shall not fail , we shall succeed, because that is what is the best interest  of Nigerians.

 

 

 

23 YEARS AFTER, STILL IN OUR MINDS

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CHIEF DAVID ADEBAYO ADEWUMI

       (Retired Principal)

Badagry  Grammar School, Badagry, Lagos state, Nigeria

Epe Grammar School, Epe, Lagos state, Nigeria.

Trinity Secondary  Technical School, Olodi-Apapa, Lagos Nigeria et al.

       B.A Econs., Dip. Ed. Durham F.R. Econs. S.(End) M.N. Econs. S.(Nig.)

      The Akogun of Ibeshe, Lagos state

      (Former Electoral Commissioner, Lagos state(Alhaji Lateef Jakande Civilian         Administration )

 

      Daddy, the legacy you left behind 23 years ago still stands like the THE ROCK OF GILBRATA.

                                  BISI, TUNIJI, NIKE, FUNKE, TAYO

Most Teachers In Niger Schools Are Not Competent-Niger Gov.

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Niger state Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Bello  has raised the alarm over the overwhelmingly presence of  Teachers without the requisite teaching skills and  competence  in the state’s Teaching Service.

Alhaji Bello made this known  on Wednesday, when members of the Board of Directors of Bida Emirate Education Forum, led by its Chairman,Prof. Jonathan Ndagi, visited him at the Governor’s office in Minna.

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“Information reaching us is that majority of our teachers in public schools do not have the competency to teach and that is why the state has record of mass failure in WAEC and NECO.

“Primary school is the basic foundation for children, if the foundation is faulty, then we will bring graduating students who cannot compete with their compatriots”, he said.

“Teachers’ salaries will be reviewed and those with fake certificates will be fished out because if we allow this to continue it will mean the children of the ordinary men don’t have hope,”the Governor concluded.

Appointment of 5,000 Teachers Terminated in Akwa Ibom

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About 5,000 Teachers with fake employment letters , employed by the immediate past administration in Akwa Ibom state, considered to be unqualified have had their appointments terminated by the  state Government.

This disclosure was  made in a statement   by the state Governor,  Udom Emmanuel ,  who also said that the state government had uncovered the illicit activities of a syndicate that was behind the issuance of fake appointment letters to thousands of unqualified applicants.

“Even the bible says if the foundation is not right, what can the righteous man do? We have tried to see how we could get something out of that recruitment process, but believe me, the foundation was very faulty.

“If we are putting people to teach our children, please let us leave sentiments apart and go for the right people. We need to make sure they went through the right process and have the right qualifications”, he said.

“It was discovered that the syndicate which had since been apprehended was involved in printing fake letters of appointment and fake school certificates at outrageous amounts ranging from 150,000 to 200,000 Naira.

“We are assuring the 5,000 people that they need not worry, when we are calling for aptitude test, you need not re-apply, just walk into the venue of the exercise with that appointment letter and justify that you are qualified to teach our children”,

 

Schools Resumption :Parents Complain of High Cost of Text Books

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The present down turn of the economy is currently affecting the financial ability of parents and guardians to buy text books and other educational materials for their children and wards as schools resume for a new session.

This was the assertion of the General Manager of Extension Publications Limited, Mr. Ademola Abesin in a chat with Federationews2day.

”The book industry this time around may suffer a lot of set backs, especially because of the current trend of the Nigerian  economy. The cost of materials to produce text books is on the high side. Those who print abroad cannot access foreign exchange, this has resulted in the high cost of text books. Parents are complaining of high cost of text books, we cannot help the situation, we have to produce, with a view to having returns on our investment”.

”We are equally parents, we know how it feels, when you have to part with a lot of money. There is no fall back position, except our investment, costs of everything has gone up,. we are only hoping that things will change for the better”, Mr Abesin concluded.

FBI Considered Gun Purchase Alert System

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Seven years ago, the Federal Bureau of Investigation considered creating an alert system that would tip off the agency when someone tried to purchase multiple guns at one time, like Omar Mateen, the Orlando mass shooter.

Multiple officials told The Wall Street Journal the project was abandoned due to potential legal problems. Law-enforcement officials have cited the purchase of multiple guns at a time as a possible indicator of an individual taking steps toward a mass shooting.

The FBI is also weighing the legality of creating an alert system when people like Mateen, who have been previously investigated for terrorism, attempt to purchase weapons.

Source : Daily Beast

In Fragile States, Put Citizen Involvement First, Panel Says

Inclusion, not services, is key to strengthening legitimacy and building peace

By:
Fred Strasser

A common strategy for state-building and development aid to transitional nations—getting basic services to the population—will fail to establish a government’s legitimacy unless citizens are included in the process, a leading researcher on conflict management said at the U.S. Institute of Peace.

Pictured left to right, Nancy Lindborg, Sarah Cliffe, Clare Lockhart, Pradip Pariyar, Grace Yeah Yeanay Mayson, and Eileen Babbitt

Contrary to a conventional wisdom in donor countries, research shows that the provision of services—including health care, water and education—has far less impact in creating legitimacy for fragile states than a displayed ability to manage conflicts, Eileen Babbitt, director of the Institute for Human Security at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy said. She spoke at USIP alongside other specialists on new approaches to building peace in “fragile” states—those that risk violent conflicts because their governance is ineffective or seen as illegitimate by their citizens.

“What creates legitimacy was people participating in the design of services at the community level and having a mechanism for expressing grievances if they weren’t adequate,” said Babbitt, describing a study she’s involved with. “This was the only relationship that actually mattered.”

Concepts of inclusion, accountability and fighting corruption—and their link to violent conflict and resulting humanitarian need—moved toward center stage at the World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul this month, said USIP President Nancy Lindborg. The leaders most focused on the interconnection of those forces are at the helm of fragile states, including Tunisia, Mali and Somalia, she observed.

The May 26 discussion at USIP was part of the annual conference of the Alliance for Peacebuilding, a network of more than 100 organizations involved in areas including development, conflict mitigation, academia, environmental work, citizen protection and business.

Research by the Institute for State Effectiveness also has shown the critical role of community engagement and consultation in shoring up fragile states, said Clare Lockhart, the institute’s CEO. Lockhart, the co-author with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani of the 2008 book Fixing Failed States, has been exploring success and failure in state-building over the past decade. A significant mistake of the Millennium Development Goals set out by the United Nations in 2000 was to focus on primary education and young children without giving enough consideration to young adults, she said.

“Young people want political engagement, but what avenues are provided for it?” Lockhart aksed. “We need to think politically: How do national agendas get set and how do we engage all the stakeholder groups?” she said.

The United Nations increasingly recognizes that successful development and conflict mitigation comes up from grass roots as well as down from political leadership, Lockhart said.

The failures spawned by lack of inclusiveness are easily demonstrated, said Grace Yeah Yeanay Mayson, the Liberia country director for the Purdue Peace Project. After Liberia’s civil war, a “major NGO” decided that a blacksmithing project in a particular county would help develop the economy and reduce political tensions, she said. The group built the project without engaging local citizens and the rituals demanded by their culture. Years later, the facility sits unused, a monument to exclusion.

“We sit in big offices in New York or Monrovia or Johannesburg and get information from the Internet,” Mayson said. “That will let you write a fabulous proposal. But the biggest mistake was not to go on the ground.”

Sarah Cliffe, the director of New York University’s Center on International Cooperation, cited an evaluation of fragile states’ progress that reached a similar conclusion. It suggests that donors have focused too heavily on pushing for capacity in governmental functions. And they have given too little attention to seeking the inclusion of citizens, and accountability and less corruption in government, she said. That is what happened in Iraq after the overthrow of the Saddam Hussein regime “with disastrous results,” she said.

Cliffe’s organization concluded that elections held soon after the end of violent conflicts usually exacerbate political tension. The focus should be on first building political institutions and reliable justice and security for citizens, she said. Yet only 3 percent of aid goes to political projects and 2 percent to non-military security work, she said.

“It’s a hard balance,” Cliffe said. “In Somalia, for example, there was external pressure to make parliament hold the government accountable when the government didn’t really exist!”

Lindborg asked the panel members what advice they’d like to see in a report on improving U.S. effectiveness in fragile states that’s now being prepared for the next administration. USIP, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the Center for a New American Security are partners in the project.

  • “There is a great need for community involvement and community inclusion into these processes,” said Mayson.
  • Youth and marginalized people need external support to compel the government to listen, said Pradip Pariyar, the founder of the Nepal Policy Center, a youth-led think tank in Kathmandu. That listening, he said, is a key to reducing conflict in his country, which recently emerged from a decade-long civil war.
  • “U.S. leadership on this issue matters,” said Lockhart. After the “tough experiences” of Iraq and Afghanistan “now is the time to look for new grounds for confidence.”
  • “The aid agenda should focus on the multi-stakeholder process and not simply as a box to check off. These are political processes. They must be understood in depth,” said Babbit.
  • If the U.S. could work out the common and distinct challenges in preventing violence, conflict, violent extremism and mass atrocities, the possibilities for averting and addressing each would be enhanced and likelihood of clashing priorities would be reduced, Cliffe said.
  • Source : USIP

22 YEARS AFTER, STILL IN OUR MINDS

Untitled

       CHIEF DAVID ADEBAYO ADEWUMI

       (Retired Principal)

       B.A Econs., Dip. Ed. Durham F.R. Econs. S.(End) M.N. Econs. S.(Nig.)

      The Akogun of Ibeshe, Lagos state

      (Former Electoral Commissioner, Lagos state(Alhaji Lateef Jakande Civilian         Administration )

 

      Daddy, the legacy you left behind 22 years ago still stands like the THE ROCK OF GILBRATA.

                                  BISI, NIKE, FUNKE, TAYO