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COVID-19: UNIBEN Holds Virtual Orientation For Surveillance Club Volunteers

The University of Benin has organised a virtual orientation programme for the first batch of volunteers who will serve in the newly established Surveillance Club in the University.

Setting the tone for the orientation, the Institution’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Lilian Salami, explained that the initiative is borne out of the need to monitor and prevent the occurrence and spread of COVID-19 among staff and students.

 

She reiterated that the volunteers were to subtly but firmly enforce the regulations rather than resort to the use of force, stressing that civility should be their watchword. Professor Salami called on staff and students to make the tasks of the volunteers seamless.

In his presentation on the modus operandi of the club, the Chief Marshal, Professor Ezekiel Ugiagbe of the School of Medicine, informed that members are grouped according to the faculties where they are expected to check and correct those who contravene the non-pharmaceutical safety protocols.

He also emphasized the dangers of the pandemic and the need for volunteers to lead by example and to ensure among others, proper use of facemasks and compliance with the fifty percent passengers carrying capacity by taxis and buses within the campuses.

There was questions and answers session where the Chief Marshal explained areas that were hitherto not clear to participants.

Principal Officers of the University and approximately one hundred and twenty volunteers keyed into the virtual orientation.

The Uniben Surveillance Club comprises of a Chief Marshal, Sixteen Marshals and over one hundred and forty other members. They are to serve in the two campuses of the University.

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UNIBEN Announces Resumption Of Academic Activities

The management of the University of Benin (UNIBEN), on Monday, announced that the institution will resume full academic session on January 30, 2021.

The announcement was contained in a statement made available to CAMPUS GIST signed by Benedicta Ehanire, PhD, Public Relations Officer of the University.

The statement read, “The University of Benin has released an amended calendar for the 2019/2020 and 2020/2021 Academic sessions.

“At the end of a meeting of the University’s Senate on Monday 4th January, 2021, it was resolved that old Students of the Institution should come into residence on the 30th of January for the continuation of First Semester lectures on Monday 1st of February, 2021.

“The Semester is expected to run until the 1st of April, 2021, while Second Semester is billed to commence on April 5, 2021.

“For the 2020/2021 amended calendar, fresh students are to under-go on-line clearance from Monday 5th to Friday 30th April, 2021 and commence orientation on the 3rd of May, 2021.”

Meanwhile, all returning students (old and new) were asked to note the following:

“1. They will be required to fill an on-line questionaire and submit the print-out to the Dean of Students before resumption.

2. Adhere strictly to the non-medical protocols of compulsory use of face masks, hand sanitizers and physical distancing.

3. Possession of an android/smart phone or device is advised, as e-learning has become inevitable.

4. Expected to comply with acceptable dress codes as determined by the University in line with societal norms and values.

5. Returning students with any ailment are to ensure that they are properly treated before resumption.”

In the statement, the Vice Chancellor, Professor Lilian I. Salami, on behalf of Management, Senate and Staff wished all, a most fulfilling 2021.

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Alleged Server Collapse: Post-UTME Still On Course, UNIBEN Assures

…Says No Issue With Server, But Power

By Ogochukwu Isioma

Following the alleged collapse of its server, management of the University of Benin (UNIBEN) says there is no cause for alarm as candidates who sat for the Institution’s Post-UTME exercise on Tuesday December 8, have been advised on what to do.

In a statement made available to CAMPUS GIST, Thursday, endorsed by the Institution’s Public Relations Officer, Dr. Benedicta Ehanire, she said those whose submissions were affected in two of the centres have been advised, via their emails, to return for the exercise.

“The candidates are to go to the University’s ICT Centres from Wednesday 9th to Friday 11th December, 2020 from 9am,” the statement added.

This is even as the University management insisted UNIBEN has no problem with its servers, while attributing the problem to a technical hitches resulting from power cut on campus.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the University has no problem with its servers as the submissions of all candidates who took the examination before 8th December and those of others whose Centres were not affected are intact.

“In the meantime, more than half of the affected candidates have been captured. Management regrets all the discomfort caused by the unfortunate incident.”

Meanwhile, UNIBEN says the present power outage on Campus is as a result of Community unrest at Ihovbor, the main source of power supply to the University.

Revealing that the Community youths forced power outage due to a clash, the University, however, expressed hope that normalcy would be restored soonest.

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BREAKING: 48-Year-Old Asefoh Emerges NANS President

By Ogochukwu Isioma

Mr. Sunday Dare Asefon has emerged the new ‘global’ President of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), amidst sporadic shootings that rocked the contest.

CAMUS GIST gathered that Afeson is a 48-year old postgraduate diploma (PGD) student of the Ekiti State University (EKSU), in Ado-Ekiti.

The new NANS president is a former coordinator of the Association in Zone ‘D’ comprising of schools in the Southwestern states.

He is said to be the ‘anointed’ candidate of the Ekiti State Governor, Kayode Fayemi, who reportedly dished out N40 million to sponsor his candidature.

Asefon polled 155 votes to be declared winner of the contest ahead of Momodu, 11 votes; Champion, 2 votes; Alopay, 7 votes and Ladoja, 100 votes. 7 votes were declared invalid in the contest marred with violence and alleged vote buying.

Earlier, sporadic shooting rocked the venue of the election at the Old parade ground, Area 10, Garki in Abuja, as alleged cultists brought to the convention ground engaged DSS officials in a shootout.

Outgoing Public Relations Officer of the NANS, who doubles as Special Assistant on Student Matters to the Ogun State Governor, Azeez Adeyemi was reportedly arrested in the process with live cartridge and ammunitions.

With the emergence of 48-year-old Asefoh as NANS president, he may be sworn in as the oldest president of the Association in recent time as the outgoing Bamidele Akpan, who got impeached recently, was sworn in at 42.

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Heavy Gunshots As NANS Convention Turns Bloody In Abuja [VIDEO]

Heavy gunshots on Thursday rocked the ongoing national convention of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), in Abuja.

CAMPUS GIST reports that the convention is holding at the Old Parade ground, Area 10, Garki, Abuja.

The student leaders are meeting to elect a new set of executives to pilot the affairs of the Union for the next one year. (more…)

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NANS PRO Aspirant, Omale, Withdraws From Race Ahead Of Polls

A frontline aspirant for the position of National Public Relations Officer in the forthcoming convention of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), Oguche Divine Omale, has withdrawn from the race.

His withdrawal was communicated via a personally signed statement on Friday, November 27, a copy of which was forwarded to CAMPUS GIST, in Abuja.

The NANS national convention is slated to hold from November 29 — 3rd December, 2020 at the Area 10 Sports Complex, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.

In the statement, Friday, Omale, a Masters student at the University of Benin, said he was withdrawing to give room to “legitimate students” who had more years in their academic pursuit.

“…While we’re passionate about service delivery, we cannot also fail to relinquish the mantle of leadership when our time is up,” he said. “As an M.Sc Student of the University of Benin, I have little time to round off with my academics as well as other project works…

“It’s therefore hypocritical for me to contest and remain in office as a student representative even while I have graduated and I’m no longer a student anymore because that has been what we have criticised and fought for all these years.

“We understand the beautiful colouration, the glamour, and the pride that comes with serving Nigerian students at the apex level, but we’re equally putting into consideration the desire of other genuine and qualified students who would not also mind in giving their very best to serve our noble association.”

Omale added, “we are of the opinion that NANS should be centred around genuine students who have shown consistent enthusiasm towards positive change. These people who have the zeal, the leadership dexterity and charisma, should be empowered and encouraged to assume leadership roles in our noble association, so as to chart a way forward for a new Nigeria, and to advocate for better society for all Nigerian students.”

He charged ‘legitimate undergraduate and postgraduate students’ to take up elective positions in NANS either at the national level, at the zonal level, or at the state level so as to lend their voices to nation building, community development, and save the Nigerian students movement from ridicule.

“Ever since I announced my intention to contest for the position of the PRO of NANS, a lot of people have embraced the aspirations as if it was theirs, because of their trust and confidence in me. That is why my decision to step down hurts, it hurts all these genuine supporters of progressive change and myself too. But we appeal that they all take this notice in good fate, as the interest of Nigerian students supersedes every individual aspirations.”

The former UNIBEN Students’ Union PRO called on leaders of the NANS who have served the association for more than 15 years, to allow the younger ones take leadership position.

“Those who have ridiculed the association and have turned NANS to medium of making money should let go of their firm grip on the association and allow genuine students who are enthusiastic for change take over the association, take over its governance while they(the leaders) advise from afar.”

To genuine supporters, who have shown their commitments to progress, including members of the Oguche Divine Omale Campaign Organisation (ODOCO), the media team, the strategic team, and everybody who has been part of this project, Omale said he was grateful.

To presidential aspirants in the NANS contest, people he described as “friends”, Omale called on whosoever that wins the election amongst them, to look inwardly to make the association great again.

To those running for NANS National PRO, a position he withdrew from, he said “you guys have worked hard to be PRO of our great association, and I just want to wish you guys the very best.”

“Having spent a lot in the course of this journey has never been my pain, but my hurts has been letting those who truly believe in my vision and in me down for the first time. I beg for your forgiveness and for you all to see this as a best step in putting our association in the right direction.

“While my victory is sure with you all, I still believe that the association should supersede individual gains or interest. The future holds a lot for us all and by Gods grace, we’ll give our best,” the statement added.

“We appreciate every Nigerian students for their support throughout the aspiration. We still value the support, the acceptance at every campus tour and all the genuine endorsements of legitimate students, we appreciate all of these and we’re indeed very grateful.”

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Student Commits Suicide Hours After Posting Cryptic Messages On WhatsApp

A student of the University of Osun, Juba Babatunde Phillips, has allegedly committed suicide hours after posting some cryptic messages on popular social media platform, WhatsApp.

CAMPUS GIST gathered that Philips was, until his death, a first-year student in Theatre Arts department, Ikire campus of the University.

According to reports gathered, the late student was found dead in his hostel room by a friend on Tuesday, November 24, 2020.

Prior to his death, he had shared messages on his WhatsApp status, commenting on hardship and suicide.

CAMPUS GIST gathered that the posts prompted his friend to rush to his hostel to check on him, only to find him already dead with a bottle allegedly containing a poisonous substance next to him.

Friends of the deceased have taken to Facebook to mourn him.

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LAUTECH ownership: We can now restore varsity’s lost glory – Makinde

…says Oyo fully ready to fund varsity to excellence

…commends Osun govt’s cooperation

Following the termination of the joint ownership of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, between the Oyo and Osun State Governments, Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, has declared that the state now has the opportunity to restore the lost glory of the university.

The governor also maintained that the real work to reposition the university and take it back to the glorious days when it was adjudged the best state-run university has now begun.

A statement forwarded to CAMPUS GIST by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, indicated that the governor stated these while speaking on Ibadan-based Fresh FM’s Political Circuit, on Saturday.

The statement added that Governor Makinde appreciated his Osun State counterpart, Governor Gboyega Oyetola, for his cooperation all through the discussions.

He also stated that with the amicable ending of the joint ownership, a situation that has bogged down the university for years, he was ready to reposition the institution in line with his campaign promise.

He added that Oyo State under his watch will readily reposition the school for excellence, noting that his administration’s drive to industrialise the state will get the much needed boost with an effectively run technology university like LAUTECH.

He said: “So, we give God all the glory. Now, the real work starts because we have to ensure that the university is properly funded so that it will be contributing to the economy of Ogbomoso in particular and Oyo State in general.

“If we are saying we want to industrialise the state and we have a university of technology adding value in Ogbomoso, the industrialisation effort can proceed very quickly.”

The governor further maintained that Oyo State is ready to fully shoulder the financial responsibilities of LAUTECH, as it has been doing since the beginning of year 2020.

He said that the state government has appropriated enough funds to the institution in the 2021 budget, adding that his administration will continue to discharge its responsibilities on the institution.

According to him, his administration is renowned for putting its money where its mouth is.

He added: “The arrangement that we met when we came in May, 2019, was that Oyo State usually will fund the University from January to June and then Osun state will fund it from July to December. We had to intervene a couple of times last year, and between May and December, we had to intervene to get the university running.

“I, already, indicated that we wanted to take it over and because of that, Osun felt why should they be putting their money and negotiation was still on?

“So, for this year 2020, Oyo State has been funding LAUTECH alone. After our January to June, from July, we have been funding LAUTECH alone basically and we appropriated enough money in the 2021 budget to continue doing that. So, we anticipated that we were going to get to this position and we are putting our money where our mouth is.”

Makinde, who described Oyetola as a statesman, equally said there is no victor nor vanquished in the arrangement that has seen the National Universities Commission (NUC) transfer LAUTECH ownership solely to Oyo State.

He added that the situation is a win-win for both states, even as he urged staff of the university never to discriminate against members of the workforce who are of Osun State extraction, saying: “Now, there is no Oyo Forum or Osun Forum anymore, it is LAUTECH Forum and it should be focused on the output and growth of the university.”

The governor added that the winners in the latest development are students of the institution and its stakeholders who can now have a stable environment that is conducive for learning and research, stating that he would visit Ogbomoso soon to meet with the stakeholders.

“Well, the only victor now are the students and the stakeholders of the university because they can now get a stable university environment that is conducive for learning and research. So, they can go ahead and do it but between Governor Oyetola and I, there is no victor, no vanquished. We just want our children to be able to go to school and also contribute their own quota to the development of the state and our country.

“It is a win-win for everybody; for the students, lecturers and stakeholders. Now, the major issue has been removed. So, they do not have any reason not to excel anymore.

“I will also use this opportunity to thank my brother, Governor of Osun State, for his cooperation and for being a statesman. When we were campaigning, I remember that my opponent then said that higher education should not be something you won’t pay for and that it should be commercialised. It was a major point of disagreement between us then and we maintained – and we are still of the view to date – that higher education should be affordable.

“So, when we came in on May 29, 2019, we found out that LAUTECH students, instead of spending 4 or 5 years for a programme, they had spent almost double of that and it was not the students’ fault but because of some people who benefit from a bad system.

“I appealed to my brother [Governor Oyetola] and told him that we need to resolve this problem. Let us keep our egos aside.

University is from the name universal; I told him that we need to let the institution live up to its name. He saw reasons with me and we were able to come together and resolve it.”

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400l Female Student Kidnapped In Edo, N7m Ransom Demanded

A fourth year medical student of the Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, in Edo State, Miss Oghogho Christiana, has allegedly been kidnapped.

CAMPUS GIST gathered that Christiana was kidnapped along the Benin-Auchi road, Thursday evening.

President of the AAU Student Union Government, Osamagbe, confirmed the development in his post on social media.

A family member of the kidnap victim, who craved anonymity, also collaborated the report.

The source claimed the kidnappers have made contact and presently demanding N7 million ransom.

Checks by CAMPUS GIST on Christiana’s WhatsApp status shows that she was kidnapped on her way to Ekpoma.

The post, which reads 4:12pm(yesterday), revealed she was to deliver starch and banga – which she deals on – to some customers.

Our AAU correspondent, who spoke to Christina’s mother, reports that the victim’s mother confirmed the report.

The mother confirmed that the kidnappers are demanding the sum of N7 million, adding that today(Friday) is the “last day” for payment.

Efforts to reach the AAU management via the Public Relations Officer, proved abortive. It was however gathered that course mates of the kidnap victim are trying to raise some funds.

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We Won’t Call Off Strike Until FG Meets Our Demands — ASUU

…Says UTAS Evaluation ’ll Take One Week, Not Eight

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has again vowed not to call of its over seven-month old strike until the federal government meets their demands.

President of the Union, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, made this known in an interview monitored by CAMPUS GIST on Arise Television, Thursday morning.

Speaking on reasons for the industrial action, the ASUU boss insisted the Union will remain adamant until their demands are met by the Buhari government.

He said: “The FG has only made promises to us, they’ve not taken any step. And UTAS, on the other hand, would only take a week for evaluation as against the acclaimed 8 weeks by the government.”

Prof. Ogunyemi, therefore, urged all ASUU members to look for alternative means of survival until the government is ready to take them serious.

CG

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