Mega Icon Magazine exclusively gathered that there was palpable tension and confusion in Ajaawa, headquarters of Ogo Oluwa local government area of Oyo State on Tuesday, as suspected thugs invaded Ajaawa town hall and disrupted the processes of electing new leadership of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Ogo-Oluwa local government wing.
It was also gathered that the thugs were allegedly sponsored by the Caretaker Chairman in the council, Mr. Oluwaseun Ojo to disrupt the process in order to prevent election from holding and impose candidate of his choice, one Mrs Kadewole Obalade to emerge as the chairperson of the NUT in the local government.
The Council boss, it was allegedly gathered mobilized the thugs alongside members of the newly inaugurated Amotekun Corps to the venue of the election to threaten and prevent delegates that would vote in the election from entering the venue.
Mega Icon Magazine, further gathered that when the atmosphere became tensed and rowdy, the policemen from Ajaawa Divisional police station, were invited to the venue on the order of the Chairman to forcefully suspended the election under the pretext that they did so to prevent breakdown of law and order.
Some members of the union who spoke on condition of anonymity alleged that the Caretaker Chairman of the council, Oluwaseun Ojo has been making frantic efforts to impose his candidate, Mrs Kadewole Obalade on the union against their preferred candidate, Mr Oyeyinka for selfish reason.
They revealed that part of his plan was that he used his power as the council Chief to ensure the transfer of their candidate , Mr Oyeyinka Ezekiah Olasupo, Mr Adeniran Isaiah Adewale and one other from Ogo Oluwa to Atiba local government in Oyo through a member of the Oyo State Teaching Service Commission board, Alhaja Nusiratu who happened to be his ally.
They wondered why the council gaffer would intervene in the affairs of a professional and independent body like teachers that is non-partisan and guided by the ethics of their profession in the name of politics.
According to them, “we want to let the Governor of Oyo State, Engr Seyi Makinde and the entire people of the State know that the harmonious relationship that is existing among the teachers in Ogo Oluwa is being threatened by the Chairman of this local government in person of Mr Oluwaseun Ojo who is hell bent to impose a candidate on us to lead us in our union for his selfish motive. This is unacceptable and we are ready to rebuff his action.
“We want His Excellency to call him to order to stop interfering in our internal affairs because we are not politicians. Whatever affects teachers will affect teaching profession and can equally have negative impact on the quality of teaching we are giving to our pupils and students”, they lamented.
But, the Caretaker Chairman of Ogo Oluwa local government, Mr. Oluwaseun Ojo has denied the allegation that he sponsored thugs to disrupt the election, stressing that he only provided security for the union to prevent violent during its botched election.
The council boss, in a telephone conversation with our reporter explained that he had held a meeting with all the concerned members of the union for about three to four times for them to allow peace to reign which did not yield any positive result, adding that as the chief security officer in his local government, it was his duty to forestall anybreak down of law and order for all citizens in his council area.
While denying having knowledge about the transfer of one of the candidates in the election and two others to Atiba local government, Ojo also accused the State Chairman of NUT of using his influence to disrupt the relationship among members of the union in the local government by polarising the union in his local government with the aim of turning the teachers against the government for personal interest.
‘UI may admit more students as hostels increase’- Acting VC hints
University of Ibadan Acting Vice Chancellor, Prof. Adebola Ekanola has hinted that the institution may admit more undergraduate students than it is currently doing with the establishment of more private hostels on campus.
The Vice Chancellor, who spoke at the groundbreaking and foundations laying ceremony of a private Hostel located at Ajibode, called Jad Hostel, being established by Hyperch O. A. Limited, explained that accommodation was a primary consideration in admitting students in UI, ‘as the university believes that every fresh and final year student must be accommodated on campus’.
According to him, “ now that we have private hostels springing up in UI under the Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement, UI may admit more undergraduate students as private hostels provide additional accommodation for our students’.
Ekanola, who disclosed that provision of accommodation on campus was one of the challenges facing UI, expressed delight that private investors were coming to play key role in this regard, stressing that ‘this is a clear manifestation of an ideal relationship between town and gown’.
While commending the Chairman of Jad hostel, who is also an alumnus of the university, Mr. Yemi Abei for his bold step, the VC noted that if the ex-student had left UI with terrible experiences, he would probably not have bothered to come back to invest in his alma mater, congratulating him on his measure of success.
Speaking earlier, the Chairman of Hyperch O. A. Ltd, Mr. Yemi Abei had lauded UI for implementing PPP policy which he said encouraged private investors to put their money in the education sector, pointing out that many universities in the country have yet to follow UI’s model.
“We are here to establish a 200 roomed world-class Hostel that the students will really enjoy. I finished from UI and I want to leverage my past experience to put in place a student-friendly hostel that will give value for money”, he said.
LAUTECH ownership: Oyo to pay N8 billion to Osun in 3 years as asset sharing agreement
Oyo state government has approved the payment of the sum of N8 billion to Osun State government as an asset sharing agreement, a follow-up to the earlier agreement reached between Oyo and Osun state governments on the ownership of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH).
The approval, which was conveyed by the Commissioner for Education, Barrister Olasunkanmi Olaleye, would be paid in three installments spread over a period of three years.
According to a statement signed by Taiwo Adisa, Chief Press Secretary to Governor Seyi Makinde, on Tuesday, the Commissioner for Education, Olaleye disclosed this while briefing journalists shortly after the Executive Council meeting held at the Governor’s Office.
“As a follow-up to the agreement reached with the Osun State government on the issue of sole ownership of LAUTECH, the Executive Council of Oyo State approved today the payment of the sum of N8 billion to Osun State government. It will be paid over a period of three years.
“The breakdown of the payment goes as follows: one (1) billion Naira will be paid in January 2021 and another one (1) billion Naira will be paid in December 2021. Three (3) billion Naira will be paid in 2022 and the last three (3) will be paid in 2023. This was the decision of the council today”, the commissioner explained.
School Resumption Remains January 18th – FG Insists
Despite fears over the surge in COVID-19 cases in Nigeria, the federal government has insisted that the January 18th resumption date for schools in the country remains intact.
The Federal Ministry of Education, in a statement issued on Thursday by its Director, Press and Public Relations, Ben Bem Goong submitted, “After extensive consultations with relevant stakeholders, including State Governors, Commissioners of Education, Proprietors and heads of institutions, staff unions and students, the consensus of opinion is that the resumption date of 18th January should remain”.
Meanwhile, the Ministry explained that all schools and parents must ensure strict compliance with COVID-19 protocols such as wearing of face masks, social distancing among others.
The ministry continued, “These measures which are to ensure safe reopening of schools for academic activities will be subject to constant review as we urge teachers, school administrators and other stakeholders to ensure strict compliance”.
It will be recalled that earlier in the week, the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 had hinted that it would review the resumption date (January 18th, 2020) for learning institutions in the country, citing the rising COVID-19 infections in Africa’s most populous nation.
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