Cross River State governor, Sir Ben Ayade, yesterday hinted that the combination of ambience and learning at the Teachers Continuous Training Institute located in Biase Local Government Area is to create an atmostphere that is academic but yet very inspiring and welcoming.
Ayade who spoke while inspecting ongoing furnishing work at the institute commended the speed and quality of equipment so far installed.
“I am really excited about the possibility of having a world class teaching environment in Cross River State because we understand the influence of environment on quality of teaching and quality of learning.
“I am very very impressed with the quality and the speed of furnishing. My hope is that will have the urgency and need to enroll enmasse. We can beam with satisfaction that the Nigerian Teachers Training Institute will now take place here and I am sure that at the fullness of time, the Nigerians will recognize the value of quality education.”
The governor stressed that “education is the basis for more societal transformation and that is why Cross River State is being ruled by two professors. And as a government we place emphasis on the quality of teaching and quality of research, hence this school.”
Speaking further on the reason for establishing the Institute, Ayade maintained that “the Teachers Continuous Training Institute, the first of its kind, is intended to train teachers and continuously retrain teachers because the quality of students is determined by the quality of teaching and the quality of teaching is a reflection of the quality of the training.
“Traditionally, when teachers are out of the university and get employed as teachers, they have no opportunity for further training, and no continuous training. So the teachers themselves are sometimes not upto date, even with the subjects they teach.
“This is because trends and research keep throwing up new findings, but unfortunately a teacher has no opportunity to update his knowledge on the subject matter, particularly when you are teaching in a village setting and away from the city centre like the capital of the state.”
According to the governor, “the institute is therefore, set up specifically to attend to the teaching needs of West Africa, to drive home the message of quality teaching because only through quality teaching that you can have quality learning which also translates to quality outcome.”
Ayade said drawing from his background as a teacher, “I studied the limitations of our teaching and I come from a university setting therefore, my inspiration came from my own life.
I have been in and around a university environment at very young age, I know its pitfalls and so given the opportunity as a governor, I needed to correct those things that I saw that were wrong because teachers were not comfortable, the teaching environment was not comfortable, teaching was made to be seen as the last resort when every other job failed.
On the curricular that will be run by the institute, the governor disclosed that the plan is “to run a curriculum that is very akin to and related to our GCE, WAEC, and NECO exams across West Africa. If we are preparing students to write physics, we will bring in the best physics teachers across the world but instead of them coming to teach the students, they’re coming to teach the teachers so the teachers will gain this knowledge and go back and teach the students in their various schools.
“So, if am teaching you physics and I am a specialist in optics, then I will come and teach optics and I will leave after two months or three months depending on the duration of my contract.
But the Professor who is the provost of this institute must have an affiliation across the world to know the best hands to bring in for each speciality to train the teacher who will now go and teach that subject in the secondary school. This means he is returning with advanced knowledge and the latest knowledge in his discipline.”
Urging teachers not to despair any longer, the governor said: “I am telling all teachers in Cross River State, in Nigeria and indeed West Africa that today you have been recognized as key persons in the value chain process of creating a better society.
Now we have an institute which is not just here to issue a certificate but it is here to train and retrain and continuously train you. Welcome to the era of teachers, Welcome to the era where teachers are now in the driving seat. Teachers have finally been recognized by Cross River State. It is indeed the turn of teachers.”
JAMB Orders UTME Applicants To Update Their Registration
The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has ordered Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) applicants who have been cleared to complete their registration for the 2021 by Tuesday.
Dr Fabian Benjamin, JAMB’s Head of Media, made the call on behalf of the examination body in a statement on Monday.
He noted that JAMB had extended the registration period by another two weeks up to May 29 after the period originally scheduled for 2021/2022 UTME/DE registration lapsed on May 15.
The examination which was initially planned to hold between June 5 and 19 has now been scheduled to take place from June 19 to July 3.
The JAMB’s spokesman explained that this was to accommodate candidates who, largely due to issues related to the newly introduced pre-requisite of National Identification Number (NIN), could not register for the exam.
He stated that an additional extension of two weeks was made to compile the list of all prospective candidates who, for any reason, were unable to register.
“The candidates who have not registered but have secured the profile codes and initiated the registration process are expected to visit specially designated registration centres to complete the registration on Tuesday, June 15, 2021,” Benjamin said.
He added, “Designated registration centre for each candidate is being forwarded to him/her through the GSM text (SMS) messages and available on the website of the Board (www.jamb.gov.ng) from 12 noon on Monday, June 14, 2021.”
The JAMB spokesman informed the applicants that the identification number on each form given to the candidates had been used to assign the candidates to their registration centres.
According to him, only candidates who have secured their profile codes are expected to visit the centres.
Benjamin stated that the few who have not yet obtained their NIN or profile codes have been forwarded to National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) and would be contacted as soon as they were cleared by the agency.
“Each candidate posted to any non-JAMB-owned CBT centre is expected to pay the registration fee of N1,000 to such CBT centre,” he said.
Sanwo Harps Competence, Insist On Appointing Most Qualified LASU Vice Chancellor
The Lagos Government has assured all stakeholders that the appointment of the next Vice-Chancellor for Lagos State University, LASU, will be based on due process and merit.
The Special Adviser to the Governor on Education, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab, gave this assurance today on a radio programme, “Daily Digest with Jimi Disu” on Lagos Talks, 99.3FM while shedding light on the cancellation of two processes undertaken to appoint a substantive Vice-Chancellor for the institution as recommended by the Special Visitation Panel.
Wahab said that the Panel of Inquiry set up by the Visitor to the University, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, submitted that the procedure for appointing a new Vice-Chancellor did not comply with the Laws regulating such process. He noted that LASU is a creation of the Law and the appointment of the VC must follow the extant provisions.
His words: “By Law, there must be an advert that calls for applications from qualified candidates for the post of the Vice-Chancellor. The requirements for the post as contained in the advert must be ratified by a properly constituted Governing Council before publication. However, the advert was published without recourse to the Governing Council and was only presented to the body as a fait accompli, giving way to favoured candidates to emerge.
“Among the contentious issues were the years of experience of interested candidates on professorial cadre, which was benchmarked at five years. The Chairman was accused of suggesting names of preferred candidates to the Council at its first meeting. The Council that eventually ratified the advert and conditions published in the advert was not properly constituted, hence the candidates that emerged were selected and not appointed according to the laid down guidelines of the institution.”
Stating that the Visitor, by his actions, did not delay the appointment but was only interested in a process fair to all candidates, the Special Adviser said the Governing Council was given a second opportunity to undertake a fresh process of appointment, but a deluge of petitions appeared even before the outcome of the process was made public.
Describing LASU as a global brand and the best State University in Nigeria, Wahab said the institution was building a world-class Business School on Victoria Island and has already established a partnership with Cornell, an Ivy League University in New York, USA.
According to him, the focus of the State Government is the constitution of a new Governing Council and a Visitation Panel that will ensure a free and transparent process of appointing LASU Vice-Chancellor.
“We desire a due and transparent process, which informed our stand that the appointment must be merit-based because you cannot build something on nothing; let the process throw up the best,” he said.
In response to the host’s expressed belief that Nigeria is a country where the leader has to micro-manage, the Special Adviser maintained that LASU is an independent institution but, as Visitor, Governor Sanwo-Olu has the prerogative of intervening to prevent a flawed process of appointing a Vice Chancellor for the University.
Wahab, a lawyer, said the former Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Olanrewaju Fagbohun, SAN, did exceedingly well as he put LASU on a global pedestal, pushed the institution’s image and reputation to the world stage and managed the deep-seated disagreement that led to this protracted process, which preceded his appointment and tenure.
He spoke of politics on campuses of tertiary institutions, saying it is as tough and highly divisive as it is in the general political space. The Special Panel observed and reported a strong division among key stakeholders of LASU, Wahab said.
Acknowledging that all qualified applicants had the right to contest for Vice-Chancellor, Wahab described the disqualification of a sitting Vice-Chancellor by the Pro Chancellor as “arbitrary” and affirmed that Sanwo-Olu does not have any anointed candidate but is only interested in due process and provision of a level playing ground for all candidates.
WINET advocates for domestication, enforcement of PWDs Act in Enugu
A woman and girls mainly focused non-governmental organisation, Women Information Network (WINET), has called for the domestication and enforcement of Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act 2018 in Enugu state to address fundamental abuse of persons with disabilities.
The organization also wants Persons with Disabilities to be taught to press charges on against the violators of their rights without fear.
A Consultant to WINET, Mr. Brian Onwurah, made the remarks while giving details of results and outcome of the project on: “Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights Education and Counselling Services for Young Girls and Women with Disabilities in Enugu State funded by AmplifyChange.
WINET is notable for its advocacies centered on the dissemination of information to promote women’s rights, gender equality, human and political rights and ensure that Nigerian women and girls have access to information that will enable them to make informed decisions.
According to the policy recommendations by WINET, PWDs should be assisted to understand and use the law through its production in simple English, pidgin and Igbo Languages.
The consultant regretted that PWDs had often been abused by able-bodied persons who perceived them as sexually disadvantaged and unlikely to marry or engage in functional relationships.
Mr. Onwurah experienced joy that through the project WINET had created considerable amount of awareness on the sexual reproductive health and rights SRHR, as well as sexual health rights SHR among PWDs.
In an opening remark, the Executive Director of WINET, Mrs. Miriam Menkiti, explained that the two year project (2019-2021) commenced in February 2019 with a baseline study on the level of awareness of sexual reproductive health and rights by young girls and women with disabilities in Enugu State.
She stated that teachers from the project schools, Special Education Centre Ogbete, Enugu and Special Education Centre, Oji-river, were trained and administered questionnaires on their students while there were Focused Group Discussions with some female PWDs.
Mrs. Menkiti said that the baseline survey revealed that among other things majority of the respondents did not have clear understanding of the concepts of sexual reproductive health and rights.
The Executive Director added that following the discovery, WINET published a training manual, titled “Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR): A Handbook for Young Girls and Women for training of the PWDs” and collaborated with the Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities, JONAPWD, Enugu State chapter to train 150 women and men of all clusters of JONAPWD to create more awareness on the subject of matter, SRHR.
Mrs. Menkiti said that is further guaranteed the sustainability and improvement on the level of awareness created.
WINET trained 150 female and male students (75 each from Special Education Centre, Ogbete, Enugu and Special Education Centre Oji-River and supported the formation of Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) clubs for students, noting that the authorities of the two schools had committed to ensure that the clubs would continue to function even after the project had ended.
Some of participants at the event in Enugu include; representatives of CIRDDOC, JONAPWP, the Albino Foundation, National Associations of the Blind, Deaf & Persons with Physical Disability, PRAWA, AFRILAW, Principals of the Special Education Centres commended WINET and the funding partner, AmplifyChange for a job well done.
Representatives of the two schools, Mrs Esther Nwoga and Mrs. Mrs. Ijeoma Onwuegbuna specifically said the project had great impact on their students.
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