Sunday, 15 April 2018

I’ll renounce my Nigerian citizenship, lecturer threatens

Mr Victor Koreyo, Lecturer, Department of
Ceramics and Glass Technology, Akanu Ibiam
Federal Polytechnic, Unwana, Afikpo, Ebonyi,
has declared intention to renounce his Nigerian
citizenship for what he called social injustice.
Koreyo in a letter to President Muhammadu
Buhari, made available in Abuja, said he was
demoted for a period of eight years by the
management of the institution and urged the
President to endorse his request.
Investigation revealed that a directive was
given by the Federal Government in 2007
directing all lecturers to produce additional
qualification relevant to the job they do.
It was gathered that the 7th Governing Council
of the institution gave Koreyo two years to
produce a foreign institution master degree in
Ceramic Science and Engineering or he would
be dismissed from service.
Koreyo from Nasarawa State, said that the
management of the polytechnic refused to
communicate the information to him in written.
He alleged that since 2010 till date, the
institutions had refused to approve his
application for staff development opportunity
because the Igbo constituted principal officers
in the school.
He also said that several communications to
the institution from the Head of Service of the
Federation (HOSF), Attorney General of the
Federation (AGF), Servicom and host of others,
on the issue was in his favour for
reinstatement.
Koreyo also accused the ministry of Education
for allegedly writing a counter-directive letter to
the rector to disregard the government
directives issued by the HOSF and AGF.
According to him, this is social injustice that is
not in line with the 1999 constitution of the
Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“I love to continue as citizen of this great
nation on earth.
“But since I do not have the financial power or
connection to challenge the Rector to obey the
Federal Government’s directives in my favour, I
decided to take this peaceful action.
“I believe this peaceful action and step of
honour will prevent the rector from killing me
by premeditated frustration of my
constitutional rights to social justice as the
citizen of Nigeria.
“I have nursed this feeling of suicide to end
these eight years of frustration by the Rector
and officials of the Akani Ibiam Polytechnic
division of tertiary education department of the
Federal Ministry of Education.
“And have decided the renunciation of my
citizenship by birth will be the best way to
peacefully end my quest for social justice at the
ministry of education and finally resign from
Federal Public Service of Nigeria,” he said.
However, a staff of the ministry of education
said on condition of anonymity, said that the
ministry was already looking into the matter.
According to him, the matter is also before the
newly constituted council of the institution.
He urged Koreyo to be patient as the new
council would resolve the problem.
“I just got to know that the new council was
already handling the matter and it is a national
issue.
“ The Federal Government has constituted a
body to look into this problem because it is a
general problem and not peculiar to him alone.
“ A directive was given to some staff to go and
acquire more knowledge and those that
brought their master degrees in relevant
disciplines were upgraded.
“But in his own case, where he got his masters
is not relevant and is not in line as at that
time.
“I want to say that the matter is before the
new council so he should exercise patient,” the
Ministry source said.
Meanwhile, the authorities of Akanu Ibiam
Federal polytechnic, Uwana in Afikpo noted that
the decision of the institution was in
compliance with the directive of National Board
for Technical Education (NBTE),
Dr Edmond Oyeneho, a former chairman of the
Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, Akanu
Ibiam Federal polytechnic, Uwana chapter, said
in Afikpo that the institution was acting on
instruction.
According to him, NBTE in 2007 introduced a
policy aimed at ending the dichotomy between
polytechnic and University education in Nigeria.
He said the policy, which upgraded the course
content of Polytechnic education to be at par
with University education, also mandated
lecturers in Polytechnics without Master
degrees in their core areas to upgrade.
He explained that the policy took about three
years before its implementation started across
Polytechnics in Nigeria.
He noted that many lecturers in the polytechnic
system, who had fallen short of the new
requirements had to enroll for either Master in
Science or Master in Arts degrees programmes
in their core areas.
“At the expiration of the three years grace
period all Polytechnics in Nigeria including
Uwana implemented the policy by demoting all
lecturers in the system without Master’s in
their core areas to lecturer 1.
“Those who went and remedied their situation
came back and were reinstated to their former
positions.
“Koreyo was therefore in line with the policy
demoted from the senior lecturer position he
previously occupied to lecturer 1 because of his
failure to upgrade his situation.
“He is a lecturer in the department of Ceramics
and Glass Geology but he went to Federal
University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO), to do
a Master degree programme in Management
Project and was awarded Master Business
Administration (MBA).
“The academic programme did not fulfill the
NBTE requirement because MBA is a
professional programme, while Master of
Science (M.Sc) is an academic qualification
required to teach in Polytechnics and
universities, ” Oyeneho said.
Oyeneho, a senior lecturer in the Department of
Public Administration and Director, Internally
Generated Revenue in the institution, criticised
Koreyo’s threat to denounce his Nigerian
citizenship.
He said that the institution would not be
blackmailed and forced to reinstate him to his
former position in disregard to existing policy
direction.
” He is not alone in the situation and it will be
a disobedience to existing NBTE policy to
isolate him for preferential treatment.
“The MSc programme was sponsored by
TETFUND with N5 million study grant and
affected lecturers receive their full monthly
salary through out the duration of the
academic programme, ” he added. (NAN)

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