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Investigation Reveals Number Of Days ASUU, NARD Embark On Strike Under Buhari

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Investigation by Sunday PUNCH has shown that the Academic Staff Union of Universities and the National Association of Resident Doctors embarked on no fewer than 552 days of industrial action under the regime of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.).

This is as the National Union of Teachers criticised the President and other public office holders for engaging in medical tourism and sending their children overseas for education, while the nation’s education system rots away.

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Before Buhari assumed office in 2015, the length of strikes in the nation’s universities reached 13 months under the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan. NARD, on its part, embarked on a total of 27 days’ strike under Jonathan.

ASUU strikes under Buhari
In 2017, ASUU declared an indefinite strike over unresolved and contentious issues with the Federal Government. The strike, which started in August 17, 2017, was called off on September 17, 2017.

READ ALSO: Buhari Asked To Choose Between Self-determination, Regional Govt

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In 2018, the union embarked on another strike over poor funding of universities; an alleged plan by the Federal Government to increase students’ fees and introduce an education bank; as well as non-implementation of previous agreements.

The strike, which commenced on November 4, 2018, was called off on February 8, 2019 after three months.

In 2020, the union again embarked on what would be the longest industrial action so far in a decade, when it went on a nine-month strike over non-payment of salaries of its members who did not enrol on the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System’s platform.

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This year, the association has gone on strike twice, including the ongoing one.

The strike, which commenced on March 24, 2020, was suspended on conditions that the government would meet the demands of the union on December 23, 2020.

In 2021, the leadership of the union in different universities have been issuing threats and agitating for another industrial action due to the failure of the government to attend to their demands.

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NARD’s Strikes

In 2016, NARD, under the leadership of then National President, Dr Muhammad Askira, embarked on an 18-day strike.

In 2017, the association, under the leadership of Dr John Onyebueze, again went on strike.

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The strike, which commenced on September 4, 2017, was suspended on September 17, 2017.

In 2020, NARD, under the leadership of Dr Aliyu Sokomba, again went on a one-week nationwide strike on June 15, 2020 over the disengagement of 26 resident doctors at the Jos University Teaching Hospital, salary cuts and issues surrounding the medical residency training fund. The strike was called off on June 22, 2020.

NARD went on strike on April 1, 2021. The strike, which was suspended on April 10 due to the intervention of the Speaker of House of Representatives, was due to the refusal of the Office of the Head of Service to allow the enrolment of resident doctors on the IPPIS platform.

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The association is also protesting the non-payment of allowances for house officers, non-payment of death benefits of the members it lost to COVID-19 and non-payment of medical residency training fund.

On July 31, NARD, under the leadership of Uyilawa Okhuaihesuyi, announced the commencement of an indefinite strike due to the failure of the Federal Government to honour the agreements reached before the previous strike was shelved.

NUT Reacts

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The Secretary General of the National Union of Teachers, Dr Mike Ene, in an interview with Sunday PUNCH on Thursday, accused the President and some other public officials of constantly engaging in medical tourism and sending their children overseas for education, while the health and education sectors in Nigeria were left to rot.

Ene described their actions as unfair and unjust.

READ ALSO: Buhari Told To Apologise For Killing El-Zakzaky’s Six Children, Detaining Him For Six Years

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He said, “It is unfair and unjust that in Nigeria, we see the President and some other politicians engaging in medical tourism and you see them sending their children abroad for education, while the system here continues to rot.

“The worst thing that can happen to a country is if its education and health sectors are in shambles and that is what is happening in Nigeria.

“If the other countries fail to take care of their education and health sectors, will our leaders go there? Will they send their children there to school?”

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(PUNCH)

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Russia Expelled From Council Of Europe Amid War With Ukraine

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The Council of Europe says it has expelled Russia with immediate effect after 26 years of membership because of the Ukraine war.

The Committee of Ministers took the decision in a special session, the rights body announced in the French city of Strasbourg on Wednesday.

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Earlier, Russia had already declared its withdrawal from the Council of Europe after it had taken steps to exclude it.

On Tuesday evening, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe voted unanimously in favour of Russia’s exclusion.

Russia joined the Council of Europe on Feb. 28, 1996.

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Together with the formal notification of the withdrawal, the Secretary-General of the Council of Europe also received information from the Russian Federation on Tuesday about its intention to denounce the European Convention on Human Rights.

In a statement on Tuesday evening, the leaders of the Council of Europe once again condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

READ ALSO: Ukraine: Horror As Russian Forces Shoot People Queuing For Bread

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They expressed their solidarity with the Russian people, who continue to belong to the European family and share its values.

The body said it would continue to stand by Ukraine in the fight against the aggressor.

The Council of Europe monitors the observance of human rights in its 46 member states and is not part of the European Union.

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The body reacted to the Russian invasion of Ukraine two weeks ago by suspending Russia’s membership, this decision was considered historic.

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National Grid Collapse: Pastor Tunde Bakare, Wike, Obaseki Under ‘Attack’

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Deji Adeyanju, an Abuja-based rights activist, on Tuesday, criticized Pastor Tunde Bakare, Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State and Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State over the collapse of the national grid.

Adeyanju said Bakare, Wike, and Obaseki should be calling out the President Muhammdu Buhari-led Federal Government over the collapse of the national grid and not be silent or fighting themselves.

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He lamented that Buhari and his wife Aisha are out of the country while everything in the country is collapsing.

In a chat with DAILY POST, Adeyanju lamented that Nigeria is currently battling with fuel scarcity, electricity, lack of diesel, while the president and his wife are both out of the country.

According to Adeyanju: “National grid has collapsed. All 19 power plants built by corrupt PDP are now generating zero power.

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“Fuel & diesel have become gold. The CHANGE Govt 7yrs later has nothing to offer except more corruption and failure. Everything has collapsed including the economy and governance.

READ ALSO: Edo PDP Crisis: ‘We’ll Capitalize On It To Take Over Power’ – APC

“Just imagine despite all that Nigerians are currently going through -no fuel, diesel, no light, insecurity everywhere; that GEJ is in a London hospital chilling and Dame is in Dubai like Aisha Buhari living her best life.

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“By now, Pastor Tunde Bakare & the then opposition would have shutdown Nigeria but useless PDP is sleeping. Wike and Obaseki are only interested in fighting.”

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NYSC Trust Fund To Lift Nigerians Out Of Poverty – DG

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The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), says the proposed trust fund would help actualise President Muhammadu Buhari administration’s vision to lift millions of Nigerians out of poverty.

NYSC’s Director-General, Maj.-Gen. Shuaibu Ibrahim, stated this at the closing ceremony of the 2022 Batch “A” Stream 1 Orientation Course, on Tuesday in Ganjuwa Local Government Area of Bauchi State.

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Ibrahim, represented by Alhaji Namadi Abubakar, NYSC Coordinator in the state, said this would be made possible as soon as the trust fund become operational.

The NYSC boss added that as soon as the Trust Fund became operational, the quality of the scheme’s Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development (SAED) programme would further be enhanced.

This, he said, would be achieved through the provision of adequate training materials and engagement of more specialist trainers.

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“It may interest you to know that the desire to make the SAED programme more impactful, partly informed our advocacy for the establishment of the National Youth Service Corps Trust Fund.

“All trainees with bankable business proposals will be supported with start-up grants.

“You will in turn, be expected to step down vocational training or employ a good number of youths of your host community.

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READ ALSO: Emulate Aisha Buhari’s Humanitarian Gesture, NYSC DG Urges Nigerians

“That way, we will be pulling millions of Nigerians out of poverty, thereby stemming the tide of youth restiveness and tendency for criminality,” he said.

Ibrahim lauded the National Assembly for the progress made on the legislative processes on the bill for the establishment of the trust fund.

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“I wish to passionately appeal to the appropriate authorities to facilitate the success of the remaining processes that will bring the trust fund to fruition.”

The NYSC boss urged the corps members to integrate into their host communities, through learning of their languages and cultures.

He also advised them to devote time to identify the needs of their host communities as well as initiate personal and group community development projects that would uplift their standard of living.

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