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Covenant University conducts lectures, exam on International PR at Nigeria-Benin border



Covenant University has made history by sending its final year Mass Communication students of Public Relations to the Nigeria-Benin Republic border at Idi-Iroko, Ogun State, for the current semester’s lectures and the examination.

The students were trained and examined by the heads and public relations directors of government agencies at the border on the subject of International Public Relations, according to a statement from the Mass Communication Department of the university.

The Head of Department, Dr Kehinde Oyesomi, represented by Dr Oscar Odiboh, said the out-of-classroom lectures and examination exposed the students to the reality of two communities of the two different countries and how they co-exist peacefully.

He said, “This is the first time ever anywhere in the world that a university would conduct semester lectures and examination for its students at an international border. This is a historical achievement for Covenant University, Nigeria’s academic system and Public Relations education in the country.”

The course lecturer, Dr Thelma Ekanem, said that the students received lectures, studied the environment, officers’ operations and equipment, adding that they were examined by their assigned international government agency at the international border.

She also said, “The field activation serves as part of the international training process that will equip the students as future global public relations experts, capable of managing multinational image, generate diplomatic goodwill and build mutually beneficial organizational and communal coexistence.”

The mass communication lecturer listed the agencies that conducted the lecture and examination as the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Nigeria Immigration Services (NIS), State Security Services, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) as well as the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

Others are the National Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Nigeria Quarantine Services (NQS) and the Nigeria Port Health Services (NPHS).

She added that men of the 192 Battalion of the Battalion of the Nigerian Army, Owode, Ogun State and the Nigeria Police (Idi-Iroko Border Patrol Unit) provided security during the field activation.

The statement also noted that students of Mass Communication Department at the Covenant University is ranked number one in Nigeria are made to undergo practical field experiences and multiple professional certifications in public relations, advertising, broadcasting and print journalism.

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Varsity Strike: ASUU demands exclusion of Ngige from negotiations



The Academic Staff Union of Universities has accused the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, of allowing the over four-month strike in nation’s universities to linger.

President of the union, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, who stated this on Friday, also denied the claim by the minister that the union was invited to meeting on Thursday.

On Wednesday, Ngige said the FG would soon resolve issues on the strike by ASUU and that concerns over payment platforms would be addressed with the union and other stakeholders in the next meeting fixed for Thursday.

But speaking on Sunrise Daily, a Channels Television programme, on Friday, the President of ASUU, Emmanuel Osodeke, said the union did not receive any letter of invitation from the minister.

He said Ngige should remove himself from the ongoing negotiation because the minister had worsened the situation.

He said, “We were not invited to any meeting. None of our members was invited. We have a secretariat but we never got any invitation from them.

“The problem we have with this government, especially with the minister of labour, is that if you can tell the world that you have fixed a meeting which you didn’t; how do you expect us to believe other things you have said?

“He should confirm to the world that he sent an invitation to ASUU for a meeting on Thursday.

“The minister of labour should leave us to deal with the minister of education. He was the one that made this matter worse to this extent. He was the one that decided to use hunger as a weapon, when he said no work no pay.”

ASUU, on February 14, declared a one-month warning strike to protest the non-implementation of its demands by the FG.

But on March 14, the union extended the action by eight weeks, citing the government’s failure to fully address its demands.

On May 6, Ngige promised that the FG would resume negotiations with ASUU with the aim of ending the strike.

Three days after his promise, the union extended the strike by another 12 weeks.

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Supreme Court verdict: MSSN urges Lagos to issue circular on Hijab



MSSN Lagos State Area Unit Amir (President), Miftahudeen Thanni

•Seeks sanction for defaulting principals, teachers

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ASUU will call off four-month strike soon – Ngige



Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, on Wednesday said the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities would soon be called off.

He stated this while briefing State House correspondents at the end of the weekly Federal Executive Council meeting presided over by the President Muhammadu Buhari at the presidential villa, Abuja.

Ngige said efforts were underway to resolve the ongoing dispute between the FG and ASUU over payment platforms.

ASUU, which grounded academic activities in Nigerian universities since February 14, 2022, had insisted on the use of its own generated payment platform, University Transparency and Accountability Solution.

It premised its demand on claims that the government-backed Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System was shortchanging its members.

However, the Federal Government, last March claimed that UTAS was unfit for wide-scale use as it failed three integrity tests.

Aside from UTAS, the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities and Non-Academic Staff Union of Allied and Educational Institutions also proposed their payment platform: Universities Peculiar Personnel Payroll System.

Ngige argued that the Federal Government was indeed engaging with ASUU, despite notions that it has been snubbing the union.

He also said there were no plans to establish an alternative payment table for all the labour unions in tertiary institutions.

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