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Rep Proposes N250,000, N.5m, N1m Salaries For Primary, Secondary, Varsity Teachers

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House of Reps

Last Updated on October 20, 2023 by Fellow Press

The Chairman, House Committee on University Education, Abubakar Fulata has proposed N250,000, N.5 million and N1 million as salaries for primary, secondary and university teachers, respectively.

This came as the Minister of Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman lamented that Nigeria’s education system was yet to contribute to the nation’s societal and economic growth despite the fantastic education policies in place.

Both spoke Thursday, in Abuja,at a one Day National Stakeholders Workshop on the Development of a Roadmap for the Nigerian Education Sector (2023-2027),organized by the Federal Ministry of Education.

Fulata insisted that no primary school teacher should earn less than N250, 000, while secondary teacher and lecturers should earn N500, 000 and N1 million respectively, if Nigeria wants to achieve quality education.

He said: “If you want quality education you must pay them to teach your children very well. Teachers must also be encouraged as it is obtained in the other climes.”

Fulata,who also advocated declaration of emergency on education, equally called on the federal government to commit at least 25 percent or 30 percent of the national budget to education.

Hear him: “The nation must declare a state of emergency in education. We must commit at least 25 per cent or 30 per cent of our national budget to education.”

The Minister of Education,Prof. Tahir Mamman, speaking,lamented that the nation’s education system was not connected to its society and economy, saying things cannot go that way.

According to him,his ministry was determined to change the narratives in line with the aspiration of President Bola Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda.

Mamman said: “Our education system is not connected to our society or our economy, we cannot say for certain that we are key contributors either locally or globally to the ideas which push societies forward.”

According to him, the country has fantastic education policies but they fail to solve its problems.

“When we receive briefings from agencies we will see fantastic policies on education but the problem is our people do not see those policies on ground, they are not seeing the problem addressed and no longer seeing the value of sending their children to school,” he said.

Prof Mamman said there was high number of unemployed graduates because the quality of education they are getting does not connect them to the industries.

The minister said industries were complaining that education institutions were churning out graduates that are unemployable.

He explained that the workshop was convened to develop the roadmap and as such be seen as problem solving one, adding that the government has few days to come up with what it will use to reset the education sector from the basic to the tertiary levels.

The minister however, urged the state governments to do their part so as they can address the challenges of the basic education, saying the federal government only has about 120 unity colleges and the majority rest on the states’ shoulders.

Earlier the Minister of State for Education, Dr Yusuf Tanko said the contribution of Stakeholders at the workshop will help in preparing their children for the future and the development of the nation.

He said the recognition of the importance of education is yet to translate to tangible results that show that an educated person stands a better chance of living a fulfilled life.

“This disconnection between purpose and reality could be said to be responsible for inadequate attention to the sector, wrong perceptions of the relative importance of the different forms and types of education,” he said.

“I must also say that the inability of our youths to gain employment after going through the rigors of academia may be responsible for gradually building dis-interest in the pursuit of education,” he said.

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FG updates on UAE lifting visa ban on Nigeria

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The Minister of Aviation, Festus Keyamo, has revealed that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) government will soon announce the date for lifting the visa ban that has been imposed on Nigerian travellers.

This information was shared during an interview with Otega Ogra, Senior Special Assistant to President Bola Tinubu, which is available on the official YouTube page of the State House of Nigeria.

Keyamo acknowledged that while a resolution was reached between President Bola Tinubu and UAE President Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan during President Tinubu’s working visit to the UAE in September 2023, additional processes were required before the ban could be officially lifted.

He said the processes have now been completed, paving the way for the imminent announcement from the UAE government.

“After that high-level meeting, Mr. President, credited to him, made things very easy for us all. We did our follow-ups as his ministers. We have done everything. We have resolved everything.

“Just wait for the announcement from the UAE government, and that announcement is imminent,” Keyamo stated.

The Minister further mentioned that he is aware of the specific date when the travel restriction will be lifted, but he emphasized that it is up to the UAE government to make the official announcement.

The lifting of the ban is expected to restore ease of travel for Nigerian citizens to the UAE, thereby enhancing bilateral relations and cooperation between the two countries.

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Otedola, Zenith Bank settle out-of-court

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The Federal High Court of Nigeria, Lagos Division, dismissed the case on Thursday on receiving a notice of discontinuance from the plaintiffs.

Femi Otedola, the chairman of FBN Holdings and majority shareholder of Geregu Plc, and some of his companies have opted for an out-of-court settlement with Zenith Bank Plc.

Otedola was involved in a legal dispute with the bank over alleged “fraudulent transactions” on his company’s accounts.

Court papers obtained by PREMIUM TIMES showed the Federal High Court of Nigeria, Lagos Division, where Mr Otedola and his companies filed the suit against the lender on 12 March, dismissed the case on Thursday, 13 June, on receiving a notice of discontinuance from the plaintiffs.

Zenon Petroleum & Gas Limited, Seaforce Shipping Co. Limited, Luzon Oil & Gas Limited, Garment Care and Mr Otedola were the plaintiffs, while Zenith Bank, Quantum Zenith Securities & Investment Limited, Veritas Registrars Limited and Central Securities Clearing System Plc were the defendants.

According to a court document, Justice A.O. Faji discontinued the lawsuit after the counsel for the first to third defendants and the counsel for the plaintiffs asked for the matter to be dismissed, with the “counsel for the fourth defendant not objecting.”

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Mr Otedola and his companies initiated legal action against Zenith Bank and the other defendants in March, claiming that the lender disposed of his shares in the bank without authorisation, manipulated the companies’ bank accounts and fabricated some documents to conceal the alleged crimes.

He accused the lender of wrongfully calculating his debts before selling them to the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON), which the bank set up to buy the non-performing loans in the books of banks with the intention of recovering them thereafter.

Zenon had claimed that the letters of credit that led to the bad loans AMCON acquired were opened before the corporation took over the debt in December 2011. The company stopped operating the account after AMCON’s intervention.

According to a document seen by PREMIUM TIMES, the overdue on Zenon’s account at the point AMCON took over the liabilities was N39 billion. Zenon said Zenith Bank offered the debt to the corporation at N49 billion. AMCON ended up paying the bank N44.1 billion for the debt.

Sources with knowledge of the matter told PREMIUM TIMES in May that Mr Otedola chose to take legal action against the bank after several failed reconciliation attempts. During the month, both parties held three meetings, none yielding the desired results.

“It is clear that Zenith Bank Plc is not sincere in resolving this issue out of court and as such a time-wasting exercise,” one of the sources said.

“At this juncture, we have resolved to pursue our claims via the judiciary, law enforcement, the CBN and the court of public opinion as we know that our claims are very genuine.”

According to a document detailing the deliberations of both parties at a meeting held on 20 May, Zenith Bank agreed to refund the N205 million it wrongfully debited to Zenon’s account with compounded accrued interest using a bankdraft.

Seaforce Shipping Company Limited, owned by the billionaire tycoon, said Zenith Bank presented some statements of account claiming that it owed the bank N5.9 billion as of February 2024. It added that Zenith Bank abandoned the claim after the company showed proof that Seaforce’s account was in credit as of 2018.

A source said Zenith Bank sold the 415 million shares that Zenon held in Zenith Bank for N4.9 billion in December 2010, noting that the shares were repurchased in the following month for N5.4 billion, triggering a net loss of N142.9 million.

He further disclosed that related transactions were carried out on Mr Otedola’s account, causing a net loss of N61.5 million and a combined loss of N205.4 million in both cases.

Isyaku Mohammed, the commissioner of police in charge of administration at the Force Criminal Investigation Department, summoned the managing director of Zenith Bank on 16 May over what he described as an alleged unauthorised debit to Zenon’s account.

“This office is investigating an alleged case of fraudulent misrepresentation, wrongful debit and unauthorised transactions referred from the assistant inspector general of police, FCID Annex, Alagbon Close, Ikoyi, Lagos, involving your financial institution,” the letter, a copy obtained by PREMIUM TIMES, read.

“A precis of the petition at disposal reveals that sometime in 2011, an unauthorised withdrawal was carried out on the account of Zenon Petroleum Gas Limited with number 10110385211 to the tune of Two Hundred and Five Million, Three Hundred and Forty-six Thousand, Five Hundred and Seventy-Three Naira (N205,346,573.00) without justification.”

The letter stated that Zenith Bank wrongfully opened some letters of credit after AMCON acquired the debt in 2011, which led to unsolicited loan disbursement that further plunged Zenon into indebtedness.

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