Musa Na Allah Sokoto
Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto State has asked the ASUU branch of the Sokoto state University to return to classes or forfeit their Salary.
He said the issues raised by the National body of ASUU in the federal Universities have not in any way obtained with what is in their institution.
He said the Sokoto state government has spent over N8 billion annually on school feeding programs, student examination fees, and other human development issues.
The Governor was speaking today Saturday at the occasion of commemorating the 62nd anniversary of Nigeria’s independence held in the state capital.
He said apart from funds spent on feeding students in many schools across the state, the state government, explained Gov. Tambuwal, has over the years, consistently paid students’ examination fees for the National Examination Council (NECO), West African Examination Council (WAEC), National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) and sundry fees.
The Governor ordered the Sokoto State University branch of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to resume classes unconditionally or forfeit their salary forth with.
He said, in addition to the humongous expenditures on examination fees and student feedings aimed at significant human developments, the administration, has been paying scholarships, salaries, and pension benefits to beneficiaries as when due.
Speaking on the sponsored students hitherto studying in Ukraine before the war broke out in the country, the governor said he has discussed with the management of the state scholarship board and tasked them to look around for universities in Turkey, Egypt or India; or even in Nigeria, where the displaced students would continue their education.
“We cannot allow you to stay out of school because that will definitely affect your future negatively,” he added.
On the prolonged strike embarked upon by the Sokoto State University branch of the ASUU, the governor challenged the branch of the union on the propriety of its members drawing their salary while being in cahoots with their federal counterparts.
He asked them to reconsider their position and go back to work, maintaining that the issues raised by ASUU branches in federal universities are not the same as what obtains in the state university.
The governor charged that if they have other issues they should come forward with them; otherwise, he will not pay them their salary until they go back to the classroom.
He admonished the branch to resume work if indeed they have the interest of the state and its students at heart, stressing that last month he stopped the payment of their salary because he has been magnanimous enough by paying them more than five-month salary without work.
On his administration’s achievements so far, the Governor said he would like to be remembered not for the many ongoing and accomplished constructions, flyovers, and building of schools, but for his contributions to human capital development.
He said that is why he is building a girl-child, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) focused academy in Kasarawa and the Sokoto state university teaching hospital; saying that his projection is that the STEM academy would produce graduates that would be enrolled into the state university of medical sciences in the future; “so that the girl-child can compete favorably with any girl in the world in terms of education and preparation to face the challenges of life.”
He said the administration has equally been working conscientiously on stemming the tide of the preponderance of high numbers of out-of-school children.
He said the state has succeeded in reducing out-of-school children which hitherto, stands at 800,000, to 285,000 now. “So, the efforts are yielding positive results,” the Governor noted.
The commissioner of information, who also doubles as overseer of the state ministry for youths and sports development, Hon. Akibu Dalhatu thanked the governor for carrying along youths in the state through initiating various empowerment programs that benefited them.
The Commission commended the Governor for his youths’ inclusiveness in various sectors of his administration.