NUC okays University of Agriculture, Environmental science in Imo

The National Universities Commission (NUC) has approved the take-off of Nigeria’s 49th state-owned and 171st tertiary institution with the coming on stream of the University of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences in Imo State.

During the certificate presentation in Abuja, the commission’s Executive Secretary, Professor Abubakar Rasheed, noted that the Umuagwo-based citadel of learning makes second to be established by the state government.

He said an enabling law backing its existence had been enacted by the House of Assembly.Responding, Governor Rochas Okorocha said the increasing number of admission seekers from the state informed the decision.

Guardian

Emmanuel Onwubiko: NYSC: Three unforgettable years

The current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has secured for itself an unforgettable legacy so much so that long after the government reaches its zenith in 2023, the remarkable effort made by the government through the management headed by Major General Suleiman Kazaure will remain evergreen.

That it took just three years to cement the legacies of reforms and transformational changes in the administration of the scheme could only have happened because the President took his time to make a choice of a General who is credible, effective and efficient as a manager and also someone who believes in teamwork.

The scheme no doubt has an illustrious status in the annals of Nigeria, but the refocusing of the entire scheme towards self-employment through acquisitions of vocational skills that have started yielding dividends of phenomenal scale is what sets apart the current management of NYSC from the rest. A history of NYSC will, therefore, have a rich volume of accomplishments of the current management team.

Specifically, the National Youth Service Corps was established 45 years ago by the government of General Yakubu Gowon with the core mandate to promote the unity and integration of a very diverse country almost torn apart by three years of bitter and destructive civil war.

In over four decades of operation, 17 helmsmen including the incumbent have superintended over the affairs of the service Corps. Each of them in their own peculiar way has proved their mettle in the discharge of their responsibilities. The present head, Major General Suleiman Kazaure assumed office on 18th April, 2016 as the 17th chief executive of the Scheme.

While in position of leadership some leaders tend to push beyond the limits, explore new horizons to attain greater heights of achievement by evolving policies that shift the paradigm of administration. Major General Suleiman Kazaure, I believe, is cast in this mould.

A humble unassuming officer and gentleman, he was busy, quietly playing his part in building, stabilizing and sustaining the security architecture of the nation as the Commandant, Nigerian Army Language Institute, Ovim in Abia State when his acclaimed anonymity was broken with a call to duty at another front, the National Youth Service Corps.

General Suleiman Kazaure, at the dawn of his stewardship outlined four focal areas to drive his administration on the path of realizing the noble objectives of the Scheme.

These include, consolidating the achievements of previous administrations and breaking new grounds, motivating the staff through enhancement of welfare provisions, improving the welfare and security of corps members and expanding the Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development (SAED) progamme through establishment of more skill centres and greater stakeholder involvement for skill and material support.

Kazaure’s unique leadership disposition and attributes is evident in the articulation and implementation of the agenda of his administration. He has in the past three years demonstrated these in his strong will, determination and commitment to refocus the NYSC Scheme to play the expected pivotal role in fostering national unity and development as enunciated by the founding fathers.

After a thorough evaluation of the Scheme, Kazaure, who came to the office with an impressive academic credentials and wealth of experience, went to work to tackle the myriad of challenges bedeviling the Scheme.

These include poor facilities at NYSC Orientation Camps nationwide, security of Corps members and Staff especially in parts of the country facing security challenges, backlog of prospective corps members yet to be mobilised for service due to paucity of funds and limited capacity of NYSC Camps, amongst others.

In view of the fact that the law that established NYSC placed the responsibility of providing and maintaining Orientation camp facilities under the purview of State governments, Kazaure embarked on advocacy visits to State Governors appealing to them to upgrade facilities in their Orientation Camps.

The intensive improvement of facilities in NYSC Orientation Camps across the country in the past three years, sign posts the benefits of these visits. Virtually all Orientation Camps but a few across the Country are operating in Permanent Camps with improved facilities.

While engaging State governments to discharge their statutory responsibilities to the Scheme, Kazaure, through collaborations with relevant MDAs, launched an intervention programme to address infrastructural deficits in the Scheme.

Consequently, Zamfara, Enugu, Ondo and many other States that were experiencing perennial water scarcity were provided boreholes while Kano, Kwara, Bayelsa, Benue and Rivers States got power generators for their Orientation Camps. Delta, Bauchi, Niger, Nasarawa, Osun, Kogi and other States have also benefitted from the provision of water tankers, double bunk beds, mattresses, renovation of accommodation facilities and other infrastructural projects.

In addition, ambulances, utility vehicles and motor bikes have also been procured and distributed to State Secretariats of NYSC to aid effective supervision and monitoring of Corps members.

In the area of providing welfare needs of Corps members, General Kazaure has been outstanding. As a result of the security challenges in some parts of the country, the NYSC Director General pursued a vigorous interface with security agencies, State Governments, traditional institutions, and other stakeholders for the effective protection of Corps members.

This resulted in the safety of Corps Members being placed in the priority list of Security Agencies all over the country and subsequently led to resumption of NYSC Orientation exercises in Yobe, Adamawa and Gombe States that were hitherto severely plagued by security issues.

The NYSC Distress Call Centre has equally been transformed to an information centre under Kazaure’s regime to meet current challenges.

The Centre which was established in 2012 and domiciled in the National Directorate Headquarters of the Scheme, is equipped with communication facilities that are manned 24 hours daily to ensure timely and well-coordinated response to calls from corps members who find themselves in distressed situations.

With the upgrade, the information centre now with five operational lines in addition to responding to distress calls from corps members, staff and members of the public, now also provide information on the operations of the Scheme to the corps participants and other stakeholders.

To further enhance the welfare of Corps members, the Management of the Scheme under the watch of General Kazaure is collaborating with the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to provide free health services to Corps members. The transport subsidy to corps members as well as the fund appropriated for their feeding at the Orientation Camp has equally been enhanced under Kazaure’s reign.

As earlier mentioned, one of the major challenges of the NYSC on his assumption of office was the backlog of prospective corps members waiting to be mobilized to participate in the Scheme due to scarcity of funds.

Through an ingenious interface with government, this has been effectively dealt with as the backlog of graduates have been mobilised and deployed for service leading to the stabilisation of the mobilisation calendar of the Scheme. In fact, in 2018 alone the Scheme executed seven Orientation Courses with over 300,000 Corps Members mobilised to serve in the Scheme’s service year Batches of ‘A’ ‘B’ and ‘C’.

It is on record that General Kazaure has further consolidated and expanded the deployment of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in the operations of the Scheme. He ensured the nationwide implementation of biometric system of pay-rolling Corps members for their monthly allowance and Community Development Service attendance to check truancy among them.

Collaborations with JAMB and WAEC in the Scheme’s mobilization process are unmistakable evidences of the success stories of the current administration in this area. The enhanced efficiency, transparency and ease of doing business between the Scheme and its various publics, on account of this, attracted to the Scheme the 2016 NITDA/NIHILENT award for the best MDA in the innovative application of ICT solutions at the e-Nigeria 2016 e-Governance Dinner and Award Ceremony.

On staff welfare, General Kazaure was quick to understand that he needed a happy workforce with the right capacity to drive the lofty agenda of his administration and the best way to achieve that is through enhancement of welfare of the staff.

In this vein, he has consistently pursued initiatives geared towards motivating staff of the Scheme. On assumption of duty he swiftly cleared the backlog of unpaid staff entitlements, restored other statutory staff allowances and increased the tempo of capacity building training for staff to enhance productivity.

In the past three years there has been unprecedented increase in staff promotion in the Scheme. For instance, in the 2018 Senior Staff Promotion Exercise, 1,368 out of 1,817 (over seventy percent) officers that sat for the examination were successful and were elevated in accordance with the Public Service Rules and NYSC Conditions of Service.

He has also been striving to tackle the problem of stagnation in the Scheme through liaison with relevant government agencies to create more vacancies. Already effort is on going for the expansion of NYSC administrative structure to accommodate the increase in scope and area of operations of the Scheme in tandem with the yearly increase in corps population.

The humane disposition of Kazaure is further highlighted in the numerous interventions he has made to ensure that staff and corps members with health challenges are adequately catered for.

It is in this regard that he upgraded the NYSC staff Clinic with the procurement of state of the art equipments and added an optometry unit. The Director-General also instituted a policy that maintains a periodic supply of office furniture to all NYSC formations nationwide in his bid to create conducive work environment for the entire workforce of the Scheme.

These and other confidence-building measures which he has relentlessly pursued have raised the morale of the staff to new heights and promoted industrial harmony in the Scheme.

Under General Kazaure’s leadership, sublime achievements have been recorded in the Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneurship programme of the Scheme designed to prepare corps members for self-employment and job creation after their assignment.

In line with his agenda to extend the frontiers of the programme, General Kazaure, through a partnership with Access Bank has completed the building and equipping of a 1,000 capacity mega integrated skills acquisition training centre in Gombe State, in addition to that of Ekiti. The Centres, to be established in each of the six geopolitical zones, are to facilitate post Camp skill training of Corps members.

Further to this, the maiden NYSC SAED Festival aimed at creating a platform for Corps members to showcase their business, vocational skills and attract funding was staged under his administration.

The invigorated public-private partnership drive also resulted in the training of 40 NYSC staff in 2018 by the giant American multi-national, General Electric, in preparation for the training of Corps members as part of the strategies for effective implementation of the SAED programme. Earlier in 2017, four programme staff and a Corps member benefitted from international capacity building activities in China.

Through the same public-private-partnership strategy, he secured credit facilities for Corps members from financial institutions and has so far been disbursed to 1,077 Corps entrepreneurs as loans through Bank of Industry BOI-NYSC Graduate Empowerment Fund. Similarly, Central Bank of Nigeria through Heritage Bank has also disbursed funds to seven Corps members through the NYSC/CBN Youth Entrepreneurship Development Programme (YEDP).

Apart from this, a Job Portal and SAED connect platforms which have expanded opportunities and created alternative platforms for training and mentorship of Corps members nationwide were facilitated by the

Kazaure administration. About 15,000 Corps entrepreneurs out of a total of about 1.2 Million Corps members trained in the last three years under the SAED programme are known to have established and are sustaining different types of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

Another signature achievement of the Kazaure administration is keying into the present Government’s policy to diversify the economy of the country through harnessing opportunities in the non-oil sector.

In line with this and a genuine desire to contribute towards ensuring food security, the present Management has begun resuscitation of moribund NYSC farm settlements across the country. Four of the farms in FCT, Bauchi, Kebbi and Oyo States began full-scale farming activities during the 2017 cropping season.

These farms produce various crops including rice, cassava, maize and cowpea as well as poultry. The farm settlements have been provided with modern implements and Corps lodges as they are also serving as training grounds for corps members under the agricultural component of the NYSC Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development programme.

Similarly, the NYSC Cultural and Sports Festival put on hold due to lack of funds were resuscitated by the Jigawa born General. The annual Sports and Cultural fiesta is an avenue deliberately created to enhance and deepen cultural cross-fertilization of ideas to promote national integration, the core mandate of the Scheme.

His understanding of the key role of these social events to bonding among Corps members apparently inspired General Kazaure’s decision to make concerted efforts to restore them in the Scheme’s annual calendar of activities.

Under the leadership of Kazaure, the Health Initiative for Rural Dwellers programme of the NYSC has been galvanised. The progamme serves as a platform for contribution towards addressing the health challenges of rural dwellers who mostly experience difficulties accessing regular health centres across the country.

Under the programme, an annual nationwide medical outreach is carried out, and usually lasts one week in addition to periodic outreaches conducted by State NYSC formations. Through this intervention, the present Management in conjunction with Grace Projects International has donated over 300 wheelchairs to less privileged/physically challenged members of the public across the country. This has enhanced the impact and visibility of the Scheme nationwide.

In furtherance of his policy initiative to consolidate the achievements of his predecessors and break new grounds, the incumbent NYSC chief executive has reinforced existing porgammes and collaborations of the Scheme with government and nongovernmental bodies and added new ones.

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, for instance, has expanded its partnership with the NYSC to enhance the credibility of her UTME using the services of Corps members for its newly introduced ICT based tests. Some of the new collaborations include the NYSC/COGNITY ADVISORY Partnership.

Cognity Advisory is coordinating a group of telecom, banking and other multi-national giants to enhance the SAED entrepreneurship training, mentorship and funding options. The partnership with European Union and the Pan African Institute for Global Affairs and Strategy (PAIGAS) is aimed at checking the wave of dangerous illegal migration by Nigerian youths to Europe and other parts of the world in search of greener pastures, through proper enlightenment.

Other new robust partnerships include NYSC/SDGs Champions programme, Great Green Wall project with the Federal Ministry of Environment, Peer Group Education on Financial inclusion project with the CBN as well as Engaging Nigerian Girls in New Enterprise (ENGINE) collaboration with Mercy Corps.

A man with an uncommon drive for initiatives that not only impact the present but have potentials to unlock the future, General Kazaure has revatilised and improved the Scheme’s image through a robust and cordial engagement with the media.

The result is increased positive media coverage and reviews of NYSC activities and immense contributions to national development and growth. The effect of this improved media visibility is increased appreciation of the relevance of the Scheme to the socio-economic development of the nation.

This has apparently influenced the high profile support the Scheme is presently enjoying from stakeholders as well as the growing awareness and perception of the NYSC by Nigerians as veritable pivot of national cohesion, worthy of sustenance. In an effort to consolidate the presence of the Scheme in the Media space, Gen Kazaure has already put in place necessary machinery for the take off of the first ever NYSC Community Radio to be domiciled in Abuja.

It is instructive, that Kazaure’s commitment to refocusing the NYSC Scheme towards greater achievements in its core objective of promoting national unity and economic development is not only yielding the desired result but has broken new grounds, accorded more relevance and attracted increased global visibility to the Scheme.

Worthy of note is the request to the Scheme by the Sierra-Leonean Government for collaboration in the establishment of the National Youth Service of Sierra-Leone and invitation and active participation of the NYSC Cultural Troupe in the World Youth Festival held in Russia in 2017.

The unique administrative paradigm of General Kazaure has permeated the Scheme as it has encouraged healthy competition among Departmental Directors, State Coordinators, Zonal and Local Government Inspectors and indeed the entire workforce.

In particular, a number of State Coordinators have intensified efforts towards execution of critical projects through public private partnerships in their states. These projects include building and renovation of Orientation Camp Hostels, Clinics, fence, Secretariat Office Complex and other Ventures as well as maximizing the utilization of Corps potentials and services.

From the foregoing, in his three years sojourn in NYSC, Major General Sulaiman Kazaure has succeeded in charting a new course for the Scheme towards realizing the dream of the founding fathers to utilize the service corps as a pivot and platform to drive the attainment of a strong, united and prosperous Nigeria.

His recent promotion to the rank of a Major General, Fellowship award from Chemical Society of Nigeria, Leadership award from Leadership newspapers, NIPR and the many other laurels he has received are definitive acknowledgement of the incontrovertible lasting legacies he has bequeathed to the Scheme.

When his administration runs its full course, in addition to the many significant firsts he recorded including the first Doctorate degree holder and Major General to head NYSC, he will be leaving fulfilled that during his era as the chief executive, the service corps recorded unprecedented leap in fortunes and achievements.

Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP): Seven things you did not know about Truvada

Truvada is a pill used for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), a practice of using antiretroviral drugs to prevent HIV infection.

BENGBENRO NEWS had earlier reported that many Nigerians do not know about the drugs and its importance.

PBS NEWS HOUR, an American news site, has highlighted some important things to know about the drug, Truvada

Here are Seven of them:

  1. Truvada has been used to treat HIV for a decade
    Truvada is a combination of two medicines, emtricitabine and tenofovir. It has been used for ten years as part of a drug regimen that suppresses HIV in people already suffering from the virus.

Truvada works by blocking an enzyme called reverse transcriptase, which HIV uses to copy its genetic material and reproduce. In addition to suppressing HIV in people who have already been infected, Truvada can also prevent the virus from infecting people in the first place.

  1. PrEP can reduce the risk of HIV infection by more than 90 percent if used properly, but is far less effective if not taken as recommended.
    PrEP is recommended for people at high risk of HIV infection. In practice, this mostly applies to gay or bisexual men who have had anal sex without a condom or been diagnosed with a sexually transmitted disease (STD) in the past six months. But it also includes intravenous drug users who share equipment and heterosexual men and women who do not regularly use condoms during sex with high-risk partners.
  2. Some fear widespread use of PrEP could contribute to the spread of other STDs
    PrEP has been criticised by some public health experts, most notably AIDS Healthcare Foundation President Michael Weinstein, who has called Truvada “a party drug,” arguing that it will encourage irresponsible sexual practices.

Mr Weinstein and other critics fear that Truvada will provide people with a false sense of security, leading to decreased condom use, riskier sex and an increase in the transmission rates of STDs like syphilis and gonorrhea.

Critics also fear that people will not take the medication reliably, as is required for maximum protection.

Truvada is intended to be used along with condoms, not in place of them, and doesn’t protect against other sexually transmitted diseases.

  1. PrEP has not been as widely adopted as public health officials expected.
    When PrEP was first declared a viable treatment, many public health officials expected a stampede of people demanding the drug.

Robert Grant, the lead scientist of the 2010 National Institutes of Health study that demonstrated Truvada’s efficacy in preventing HIV transmission, said this to The New Yorker:

But despite the fact that an estimated half million Americans could be good candidates for PrEP treatment, relatively a few actually take Truvada.

The drug’s manufacturer, Gilead Sciences Inc., said that in reviewing records from about half of U.S. pharmacies that dispensed Truvada between January 1, 2012, and March 31, 2014, it found that only 3,253 people had started the PrEP regimen during that period.

Various factors have been cited as contributing to the low numbers of people using PrEP, including criticism from groups like the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, the drug’s high cost and the fact that Gilead has not actively marketed the drug for use in preventing HIV.

  1. Truvada use has been stigmatised by some members of the gay community
    Another possible reason for Truvada’s limited use is that PrEP users have been criticised by some in the gay community, who have labeled them “Truvada whores.”

These critics argue that many who use the drug see it as en excuse to engage in unsafe sexual practices, and that encouraging people to use PrEP is tantamount to giving them permission to have sex without condoms.

  1. Truvada is expensive
    In the USA, Truvada costs about $1300 per month without insurance. In Nigeria, the price cannot be ascertained but the drug is said to be very expensive.
  2. Truvada has some negative side effects.
    Truvada can have a number of adverse side effects, including lactic acidosis, a dangerous buildup of lactic acid in the bloodstream, liver problems, kidney issues — including kidney failure — and bone density loss.

So far, no evidence of bone density loss had been found in people taking Truvada to prevent HIV, though it has been seen in those who take it to suppress the virus.

Don proffers solution to petrol challenges in Nigeria

A Don, Prof. Cecilia Olufunke-Akintayo, has advised the Federal Government to build modern based chemical plants, capable of producing bio-based petrol chemical in place of conventional Premium Motor Spirit, (PMS).

Olufunke- Akintayo, a Professor of Industrial Chemistry, Federal University, Oye Ekiti, Ekiti gaved advice on Sunday while delivering inaugural lecture of the university.

She said that doing so would solve the perennial problems usually faced by Nigerians and government in processing and getting the commodity distributed. According to her, this will serve as alternative to petrochemical products which have also been a threat to biolife and environment.

Her call was coming, just as the institution’s Vice Chancellor, Prof. Kayode Shoremekun, lamented the poor state of petrol chemical and steel industries in the country. Olufunke- Akintayo is also the Head of the university’s academic planning board of the university.

The don said in the lecture, entitled: “The place of plant oil derived products as sustainable replacement for petrochemical products in industries”, meant that Nigeria must look inward to solve her problems. According to her, there is urgent need for paradigm shift from petrochemicals, which constitute biological hazards, to a sustainable alternative, where environmental impact will be reduced.

She explained that application of natural products could provide sustainable alternative to petroleum-based products through adequate and proper designing of bio-based products. The professor also said that a transition toward bio-based products would also guarantee economic, social and environmental sustainability of the country.

She also urged government to shift from what she refered to as monolithic oil- based economy to a diversified one, based on systematic utilisation of raw materials. She further advised government to invest more in resesrch in universities, especially chemical research, which she said was the driving force of industrialisation.

Commenting on Olufunke- Akintayo’s lecture, Shoremekun commented the lecturer for a brilliant lecture. He said the thrust of her research focused on the need for Nigeria moving from over reliance on conventional petrol chemical products, particularly petrol to bio -based chemicals with less hazards.

System failure, delays, other hitches mar JAMB exams

JAMB bars journalists from taking pictures, videos of candidates Security personnel confiscate Vanguard reporter’s phone

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ABUJA—System failure, lateness and other hitches, yesterday, marred the commencement of 2019 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME, across the country. Reports across the centres nationwide indicated computer failure, late commencement of examinations, especially in Lagos, Kano and Kaduna states.

In Lagos, anxious parents at Dalewares Centre, Ilupeju, who spoke to BENGBENRO NEWS, lamented that examinations were yet to commence as at 7.30 p.m., saying: “Candidates who arrived the centre since 7 a.m., were famished and exhausted all day without any explanation for the delay.”

At a centre located at School of Technology, Kano Polytechnic, candidates were still waiting anxiously to write the examination by 7.20 p.m Similarly, at God is Able Centre, Olodo, Ibadan, Oyo State, candidates were yet to start the examination by 8 p.m, earlier scheduled for 11 a.m. A parent who lamented the delay, said: “You (Jamb) had a whole year to prepare for this exam and by 8p.m., candidates are still waiting to write exams. This is total rubbish;

you put most parents and guardians in total confusion.” The frustration of parents and guardians were also expressed in the following tweets by Oloruntola babatunde @haztola “My sister couldn’t write her jamb this morning (yesterday) because her fingerprints and four others couldn’t be verified by the computer and there was no provision made by @jamb for the failure of their machine. So unfair.”

NECO postponed 2019 Common Entrance Examinations

Minna-National Examinations Council, (NECO) has postponed the National Common Entrance Examinations into Unity Schools initially scheduled for 13th of April to 27th of the same month.

A Statement signed by the Media Officer of the Council,Azeez Sani said the postponement was to enable States with low registration of candidates register for the examination.

He said so far, 70,720 candidates have so far registered for the examination. Sani advised candidates to download the website of the Council for the new timetable.

JAMB bans wrist watches, pens, phones, 15 others at UTME centres

The 1.8million candidates sitting for the 2019 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) from Thursday 11 April are prohibited from bringing 18 items to centres where the tests would take place.

The prohibited items listed by an official of the Joint Admission Matriculation Board (JAMB) are Wrist Watches, Pen/Biros, Mobile phones or similar electronic devices, Spy reading glasses,calculators or similar electronic devices, USB, CD, hard disks and or similar storage devices and books or any reading/writing material.

Other banned items are Cameras, Recorders, Microphones, Ear pieces, Ink/pen readers, Smart lenses, Smart rings/ jewellery, Smart buttons, Bluetooth devices, Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cards and Erasers

The examination will end next week.

Fabian Benjamin, JAMB spokesman told Premium Times, the online newspaper that the items were prohibited to secure the sanctity and integrity of the board’s examination.

He said examination officials are allowed to scrutinise eye glasses or similar devices and when convinced that such items may compromise the sanctity of the examination, the examination official should confiscate them.

”We urge candidates to abide by the rules and regulations of the board. Candidates should not come with any of the prohibited items,” he said.

JAMB warns UTME candidates against the 2019 exam.

As the countdown begins for the 2019 UTME, the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has urged candidates to adhere strictly to the printing order of their examination slips, to avoid unnecessary issues.

The warning was given by the Head, Media and Information, Dr Fabian Benjamin, according to the board’s weekly bulletin, ‘JAMBULLETIN’.

According to the bulletin, printing of the 2019 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) notification slip is on-going, as the board has since made it ready for all candidates who registered for the examination.

Over 1.8 million candidates registered for the examination which has been scheduled to commence on Thursday, April 11.

“The notification is to allow candidates know their examination schedules, which includes time, date and venue of the examination.

“Candidates are therefore advised to take the printing order seriously in order for them to have an idea of the location of their centres, well ahead of the examination.

“It is also to enable them prepare for all necessary logistics of being at their respective centres on time,” the bulletin stated.

It added that the e-slips of the candidates had been placed on their JAMB profiles created at the point of registration.

“For those who are unable to access their slips through their portal at www.jamb.org.ng, the board has provided a step by step process of making the printing easy.

“First, they should go to the official JAMB portal, www.jamb.org.ng/efacility /printexaminationslip.

“Next, candidates would be required to enter their registration number, telephone number used in vending the pin at the point of registration or email in the appropriate column and follow the next command,” it said.

“Candidates are advised to print two copies of the examination slip in full, as one copy will be submitted at the centre while the second copy will be kept by the candidates for reference purpose,” it said.

The bulletin added that it was important to note that there would be no rescheduling of the examination, no matter the reason.

It added that all candidates must ensure that they are verified using the Biometric Verification Machine.

Meanwhile, the board has also warned candidates and parents or guardians to desist from paying UTME application fees to schools or tutorial centres.

It said that the warning became necessary owing to the growing practice of some elite schools/colleges and tutorial centres that collect money in bulk from candidates to register them en masse.

According to the bulletin, through diligent investigation, the board discovered that schools involved in the practice usually levy candidates exorbitant sums running into millions of Naira for the purpose of the UTME registration.

“In this regard, it should be reiterated that the board does not do group registration, as candidates are required to do individual registration.

“The board has noted with displeasure a series of some of the unfortunate situation some of these schools, especially the elite ones, have put some candidates through.

“In their bid to make money, they engage in series of infractions in the name of group registration and other acts inimical to the interest of the candidates and the sanctity of the examination.

“This kind of fraudulent registration end up distorting candidate’s data,” it said.

It warned the public to be mindful of such unscrupulous schools or centres who more often than not, register candidates at unauthorised centres.

According to the bulletin, the board’s examination is not a school based examination and therefore does not require candidates registering in groups.

Lagos students plead for payment of outstanding bursary, scholarship

The National Union of Lagos State Students (NULASS) in tertiary institutions across the country has appealed to the Lagos State Government to release the outstanding payment of 2017/2018 bursary and scholarship of its members.

The students made the plea in a petition to Mr Kazeem Adeniji, the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Lagos State Ministry of Justice, obtained by BENGBENRO NEWS in Lagos on Saturday.

It was signed by eight representatives from eight institutions across the country including Miss Busola Okoya, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomosho; Qudus Olaguro, Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education; Bolaji Ojoare; Lagos State University, Ojo and Ogunowo Olusola, University of Lagos.

Others were Waliu Adeyeri, University of Ilorin; Abdulaziz Adeduntan, Amadu Bello University, Zaria; Oladele Moses, Polytechnic Ibadan and Suliat Olatunji, LASPOTECH. According to the petition, the students said of 10,585 beneficiaries, only 2,106 students had received their payments from the 21 per cent of total fund released by the government.

They also claimed that for subsequent payment to the beneficiaries, only students from Epe Division had been paid. The students said the selective payment appears inequitable and grossly unjust to other divisions of the state.

“On behalf of the entire students of Lagos State origin in all tertiary institutions across the length and breadth of the nation, we write to thank the government for the release of part of the bursary and scholarship funds. “We are, therefore, appealing to you, to use your good office to prevail on His Excellency, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, for the release of our outstanding bursary and scholarship funds.

“The scholarship board has commenced the sale of forms for new applicants. “This presupposes that if this administration declined to offset the outstanding, it could become a backlog that will affect 2018/2019 payment.

“We have greatly suffered because of this non-payment. A lot of our members are indebted one way or the other to book sellers and food vendors in and around their various campuses. “Some rely heavily on these funds for their sustenance in school,” they said.

When contacted, Mr Steve Oshinowo, Executive Secretary, Lagos State Scholarship Board, Iyana-Ipaja, said efforts were being made to secure the release of funds for 2017/2018 bursary and scholarship.

Oshinowo told BENGBENRO NEWS that the state government was committed to improving welfare of its students.

BENGBENRO NEWS reports that beneficiaries include, 1,394 local scholarship; 9,188 bursary and three foreign Scholarship.

PTCIJ trains campus journalists

A three-day training organised by the Premium Times Centre for Investigative Journalism (PTCIJ) via its UDEME project on basics of journalism for campus journalists ended on Wednesday.

The event which was held from April 1-3 in Abuja had in attendance 20 students selected from eight universities across the country.

The Universities are the University of Ibadan, University of Uyo, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Bayero University Kano, Federal University Oye Ekiti, Obafemi Awolowo University, Lagos State University, and the University of Jos.

Nine facilitators trained the participants on the need for accountability journalism and the roles journalists play in achieving accountability in the Nigerian system.

These roles include monitoring the procurement processes and impact review.

The participants were trained on diverse issues regarding accountability journalism such as introduction to investigative journalism; use of spreadsheet and Freedom of Information; procurement processes; ethics and values in journalism; multimedia journalism, amongst others.

Dapo Olorunyomi, the publisher, BENGBENRO NEWS, implored the participants to take charge of the future as they are the ones ”who will revive failing journalism in Nigeria as it is in a crisis”.

Loveleen Okereke, a project officer at UDEME, said she hopes that at the end of the training, the participants would be able to integrate all the knowledge gained.

“It also afforded UDEME the avenue to train young journalists on how to effectively they can hold public officers accountable and the knowledge acquired here is not gotten in everyday classrooms,” she said.

Oluwakemi Adelagun, a participant from Lagos State University, said the training ”was very impactful and very practical”.

”I have learnt how to analyse budget documents which in turn helps me hold public officers accountable,” she said.

Emmanuel Kwapyil, another participant from the University of Jos, narrated how the training ”has met and beat his expectations”.

“For me, the training has achieved its aim. It will also bring about a journalistic revolution.”

UDEME is a social accountability project of PTCIJ which primarily monitors projects nominated in the budget: capital, constituency and ecological projects. UDEME has monitored projects in about 15 states.