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Fresh Crisis Looms In Varsities Over Delay In Re-negotiation Agreement

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Fresh strike is looming in the public universities over the alleged inability of the Federal Government to conclude re-negotiations with the university-based unions on the 2009 agreement.

This came as the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, SSANU, lamented that it has lost so many of its members to the failure of the government to pay the four months withheld salaries during the strike period.

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Recall that the four university based unions, SSANU, the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, the Non-Academic Staff of Allied and Educational Institutions, NASU and the National Association of Academic Technologists, NAAT, had last year, shut down public universities over the inability of the government to attend to their demands.

ASUU withdrew its services on February 14, 2022, and was followed by NAAT after many weeks and then SSANU and NASU.

While SSANU and NASU called off their strike on August last year after they reached an agreement with the Federal Government, ASUU remained adamant until the National Industrial Court ordered the striking lecturers to go back to their duty post in October.

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While the case instituted by FG against ASUU is still pending in court, Vanguard gathered that another round of storm is gathering momentum in the universities over the alleged delay by FG to conclude discussions with the unions on the 2009 Agreement.

In a communique at its 42nd Regular National Executive Council, NEC, meeting hosted by the University of Calabar, Cross River State, SSANU demanded immediate resumption and conclusion of re-negotiation of the 2009 Agreement.

National President of SSANU, Mohammed Ibrahim told Vanguard that, “The earlier we conclude this re- negotiation and sign a new agreement, the better for the university system.”

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In the communique, SSANU had said, “NEC in session is deeply peeved by the nonchalant and detached attitude of FG towards the long standing issue of renegotiating the 2009 Agreement.

READ ALSO: Why Gbajabiamila Needs To Apologise To ASUU – Falana

“Renegotiation of the agreement is overdue by 12 years. This is against the statutory five years agreed for periodic review. It is most disheartening and appalling the FG is handling the issue.

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“We are seriously disturbed by government reluctance despite SSANU’s readiness in ensuring that this matter is urgently concluded. NEC, therefore, demands the immediate resumption and conclusion of this exercise without further delay.”

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JAMB Speaks On Extension Of 2023 UTME Registration Deadline

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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) says it would not extend deadline for the 2023 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) registration.

According to NAN, Ishaq Oloyede, JAMB registrar, gave the warning after monitoring the registration exercise in Kano state on Wednesday.

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Registration for this year’s UTME started on January 14 and is scheduled to end on February 14.

The exam is billed to commence on April 29 and end on May 12.

Speaking on the registration exercise, Oloyede said JAMB’s target for the year is to register 1.8 million candidates.

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He also revealed that the board has so far registered a total of 500,000 candidates across the country.

The JAMB registrar called on applicants to register for UTME within the stipulated deadline as there will be no extension.

We do not expect any extension as about 500,000 candidates have registered out of the 1.8 million candidates that we are expecting,” he said.

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READ ALSO: JAMB To Prosecute 34 Students, Six Centres For Exam Registration Malpractice

The development comes as the board said it has apprehended six operators of computer based test (CBT) centres in Kano over alleged illicit registration of candidates for UTME.

Oloyede said the arrested operators allegedly compromised the registration process, adding that they would be handed over to security operatives for prosecution.

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JAMB To Prosecute 34 Students, Six Centres For Exam Registration Malpractice

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The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board, JAMB, has uncovered 34 prospective candidates who connived with Computer Based Test Centres for the purpose of exam malpractice.

The candidates who were registering for the examination allegedly allowed the CBT centre staff to thumbprint forms for them.

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One of those apprehended includes a level 5 Law student of the Bayero University, BUK, Kano, who was said to have thumb printed for 14 prospective candidates who plan to sit for the examination.

READ ALSO: 2023 UTME: 445,081 Register As JAMB Targets 1.8m Candidates

Another candidate at the same centre was also caught thumbprinting for 14 students while a third suspect, who was arrested personally by the JAMB Register, Professor Ishaq Oloyede registered for six students.

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Professor Ishaq Oloyede who was in Kano to monitor the UTME Registration exercise and supervised about six JAMB centres said he would ensure that those arrested are prosecuted because malpractice begins at the point of registration.

The JAMB Registrar said the Law insists that every student must thumbprint by themselves, using their ten fingers when registering for the UTME and where a candidate has problems with some of the fingers, the official registering him will simply indicate the finger as “Bad”.

But instead of strictly flowing the rules, some Ad-hoc staff for the UTME who are employed by the Computer Based Test Centrs are now conniving with the candidates to thumbprint for them, this is indeed done to coerce female students to sleep with them or to get extra money from them”.

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He said the exam board had also uncovered a similar case in Abuja where somebody doing the UTME Registration Exercise wanted to sleep with a student but she refused and reported to them and quickly they discovered the place and dealt with the suspect.

“This is what they are doing to enjoy extra gains from the students that is why we commenced this supervision across Nigeria to arrest the ugly situation by punishing anybody found wanting.”

Professor Oloyede hinted that the board has no problems with its staff and CBT centres but that the problems are with the private CBT centres, who though have written an indemnity with the board to do the right thing are still found wanting.

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And if they refuse to produce anybody found wanting, they will now take the blames, for example, this person reading Law what sort of Lawyer are you producing for the country who has now engaged in fraud conniving with students to cheat the nation”.

READ ALSO: JAMB Announces 2023 Registration Date

Oloyede informed that the 34 students found conniving with the suspects would not be allowed to even sit for the examination this year and if they do by any means their papers would be cancelled.

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The Registrar appealed to students to be guided by the UTME registration guidelines and not allow anyone to Thumbprint forms for them because doing that would cost them their chances and they would also be prosecuted for fraud.

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2023 UTME: 445,081 Register As JAMB Targets 1.8m Candidates

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The Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, Prof Ishaq Oloyede, has revealed that 445,081 candidates have registered for the 2023 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination.

Oloyede who disclosed this while monitoring the registration exercise in Ilorin, Kwara State capital on Monday, said that JAMB’s target this year is 1.8 million adding that there will not be an extension.

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He further revealed that JAMB is planning to build a multi-million naira zonal office for Kwara which has been captured in its budget.

READ ALSO: JAMB Adopts E-naira For Payment Of UTME Registration, Gives Guideline

The registrar said, “We do not expect any extension. As of Sunday, 445,081 people have registered out of the 1.8 million candidates that we are expecting.

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“We have gone halfway but you know some of our people will come at the last hour. But there is no room for an extension because we have made provisions for the registration of 100,000 candidates per day and we are doing 60,000 daily now.

“So the candidates are the ones not turning up well enough. For those who want to write a mock, the space is almost filled and when that happens, we don’t want to turn the mock into another examination. When the numbers are up to a quarter of the candidates, we will stop it. Now, we have about 144,000 who have indicated interest to write the mock,” he added.

Oloyede said, “I have discovered that in one of the centres, instead of buying enough cameras to capture the students, the owner bought just one with the possibility of missing the pictures with the names of the candidates. That is very detrimental to the candidates and we have to suspend the centre from registration or conduct of the exams until the proper thing is done.

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“Elsewhere, we had to make a few corrections but overall, it has been excellent because there has not been a single case of extortion. That is very gladdening to us as the purpose is to ensure that candidates have confidence in the system. We won’t allow any individual to pervert or divert the system.”

READ ALSO: Steps On How UTME Candidates Can Self-generate Profile Codes – JAMB

“We don’t need to appeal to any centre because they know we don’t have any sacred cows. Once they cross the line, they will be dealt with.

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“We have been fair to them and that is why we on our own raised the fee of registration point from N700 to N1000 because of the price of diesel and we collect it on their behalf including the mock fee and pay the centres which amount to about N100m. We will continue to make the business profitable for the CBT centres but will not allow them to exploit the candidates,” Oloyede said.

JAMB boss noted that the inspection is to ensure that the rules and regulations for registration are complied with and convince everyone that there’s no need to cut corners.

 

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