The National Public Relations Officer of the Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU) , Dr Ahmed Lawan Bazza, while reacting to the Federal Government’s directive to reopen all schools said that any inadequate preparation for schools reopening may be catastrophic to an already stressed nation in terms of public health facilities.
In an interview with EduCeleb.com, he posited that the implementation of the NEEDS assessment in Public Tertiary Institutions is also a key factor in addressing some if the issues of Resumption.
“COEASU is not averse to schools resumption but all the COVID-19 protocol especially the none pharmaceuticals aspect as presented by the Presidential Taskforce should be implemented.
“Any inadequate preparation in that regard could result to a spike, which may be catastrophic to an already stressed nation in terms of public health facilities.”
“The implementation of the NEEDS assessment in public tertiary institutions is also a key factor in addressing some of the issues.”
“The government need to show the political will in their handling of teacher Education and indeed education in Nigeria.”
Dr Bazza disclosed that the government was yet to attend to the demands of the union. As a result, the union has declared an industrial action calling on the Federal Government to attend to their demands.
Some of the demands made by COESU includes the implementation of NEEDS assessment, Renegotiation on the 2009 agreement with government, Review of the Act establishing the Colleges of Education, State Government insensitivity to the plight of Colleges of Education in the states, Autonomy to award degree also known as Dual Mode, Review of Outsource services and mainstreaming of our securities into government payroll, Integration of staff schools as components of Colleges of Education in Nigeria.
Speaking on the resumption of college’s of education in line with the Federal Government directive to reopen schools, he said that the union will be having a National Executive Council meeting next week to take positions in the issues of industrial concern.
The National President of National Association of Nigeria Colleges of Education Students (NANCES), Mahmud Abubakar, has supported the Union industrial action decision saying that the demand of COESU was reasonable.
He disclosed that the Federal Government was in the habit of not fulfilling the demands of the Staff Union.
“The demand of COEASU is reasonable, the federal government is used to marginalising colleges of education in terms of everything maybe because the colleges belongs to the lowest income earners in the country and maybe that’s why the government doesn’t see their demands as a priority”
“They always find it difficult to listen to the demand of COEASU anytime they make demands. Even when they went on strike it took the government a while before they responded simply because they don’t see it as necessity”
“All COEASU is fighting is for teachers education not to die totally in this country as you know colleges are the teacher producing institution and any country that neglect its teachers or teacher producing institution is sitting on a gun powder”
Abubakar however appealed to the Staff union and Federal Government to hasten up with their decisions as students are waiting to resume
“So our stand is that we are with COEASU and we are calling on the FG to please listen to them for the sake of the future teachers of this country”
“COEASU too should pity the students that have been sitting at home all this while because college students are the teachers in making so they are the future teachers”