By Gabriel Dike
The Governing Council of Federal College of Education (Technical), Akoka, Lagos, has assured academic, non-academic staff and students of the 54-year-old institution that their welfare would be accorded top priority.
Chairman of the seventh governing council, Alhaji Adamu Muazu, who gave the assurance during an interactive session with staff and students, said, at their first meeting, council members put their welfare on the front burner.
In the same vein, the four staff unions and the students’ union government urged the new governing council to take welfare of their members seriously and also address outstanding issues.
Muazu said the governing council was made up of technocrats and members would ensure they take the college to the next level.
According to him, the gathering was to rub minds and tell the staff and students what the council was bringing on board, stressing “the council cannot achieve the objectives unless the college has high-quality staff.”
His words: “We are aware of other establishment issues. It will be the governing council’s major assignment. The students are the reason why you are her. It is our responsibility to look after the students.’’
Muazu acknowledged the work done by the sixth governing council. He appealed to staff to cooperate with the council to ensure they achieve results, “At the end our tenure, we will leave the college much better than we met it.”
Earlier, the provost of FCET Akoka, Dr. Ademola Azeez, acknowledged the performance of the sixth governing council, stating that “When they came on board, there were series of crisis and they were able to stabilize the college.”
Azeez said the seventh governing council would build on what the sixth council achieved and assured them that staff and students would not disappoint them. He stressed that the council had assured the college management that they would lift the institution and make it better than they met it.
The provost stated that the management was interested in the welfare of staff and students, arguing that matters that require governing council approval would be brought before the council, including the promotion arrears.
Chairman, Senior Staff Union of Education of Nigeria (SSUOEN), Mr. Nwachukwu Augustine, urged the council to resolve the issue of their members in staff school not captured in the IPPIS and approve for payment allowances owed staff.
The chairman, National Academic Association of Technologists (NAAT), Mr. Rotimi Oginni, appealed to the governing council to assist staff with equipment in the laboratories, improve welfare of staff and provide teaching materials.
While the chairman, Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU), Mr. Alonge Shefiu, said workers are waiting for the approval of 2020 promotion, its arrears for 2018 and 2019, increase the hazard allowance from 2 percent to 5 percent, payment for the new minimum wage and the need to expand the college ahead of the degree awarding status.
The FCET Students Union President, Jubilee Kola, said the Azeez-led management has done a lot to improve students welfare and informed the council that they need more hostels due to increase in students population and provision of sports facilities.
In his presentation, chairman, Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU), Mr. Ebenezer Oje, acknowledged the performance of the 6th governing council and assured that the union is ready to work with the new council, carry out its directive as long as those orders are in the best interest of their members and the system.
Oje tasked the council to strengthen existing programmes through provision of instructional materials, re-tooling of workshops, studios, laboratories, upgrade existing infrastructures to meet NUC requirements for degree awarding status,computerisation of its operations, expansion of the college, extension of existing classrooms to accommodate enrolment, tackle issue of inadequate supply of electricity, employment of staff and payment of the 33 months arrears of Peculiar Earned Academic Allowance (PEAA) and arrears of promotion.