…Proffers solutions on how to raise education standard
CYNTHIA CHIDINMA IGBOKWE writes that members of the Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU), South East Zone has conferred a labour-friendly award on the Provost of Federal College of Education (Technical), Umunze, Anambra State, Dr Tessy Okoli. The staff union said the award was in recognition of Okoli’s staff development programmes and welfare in the college.
The award presentation was the highlight of the 6th national conference of the union, held at Federal College of Education Ehamufu from Tuesday 14th -Saturday 18th May, 2019. The conference, which had participants drawn from all Colleges of Education in the South east geopolitical zone and beyond discussed the theme: Emerging Issues in Education in Nigeria: The Way Forward.
Okoli was commended for according staff welfare a priority in her administration of the College, as well as encouraging academic staff training and development. The COEASU Chairman, FCET Umunze chapter, Comrade Churchill Okonkwo, said Dr Okoli adopted an open door policy on assumption of office, thereby encouraging constructive engagement with staff of the College. He said the College has witnessed peace and tremendous growth in several areas since her appointment in May last year.
While presenting the award, the Chairman, Local Organising Committee, Dr Ikechukwu Calistus Agboh, said the awardees were selected after a meticulous screening process, noting that all recipients were chosen solely on merit. He further urged the Provost to continue the good work of providing effective leadership in the College.
Dr Agboh said the theme of the conference, Emerging Issues in Education in Nigeria: The way forward, was tailored to provoke informed discussion on practical ways to reposition the Colleges of Education system to benchmark global standard. He said the need to improve the sector becomes imperative in the face of emerging trends in the world, which has become a global village.
The Union also conferred a Distinguished Labour-Friendly award on the former Acting Chairman, 6th Governing Council of FCE(T) Umunze, Barrister Ibrahim Abdu Radda. He was commended for his redeeming mission in the College by bringing harmony and relative peace which enhanced mutual understanding between management, staff and the three staff unions of the College.
Radda, who was represented at the award ceremony by the Registrar, Federal College of Education (Technical) Umunze, Sir Augustine Udensi, was extolled for constituting a peace committee during his tenure to interface with aggrieved union members and avert possible industrial disharmony and unrest in the institution.
Other awardees included the Provost, Federal College of Education Ehamufu, Dr Pauline Ngozi Ikwuegbu and the Provost, Nwafor Orizu College of Education, Nsugbe, Dr Ifeyinwa Osegbo.
While congratulating the recipients, the Enugu State Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, described the award as a recognition of their good work and urged the awardees not to rest on their oars.
The Governor was represented at the occasion by the Enugu State Commissioner for Education, Prof Uche Eze. The conference was chaired by the Enugu State Commissioner for Local Government Matters, Hon Chijioke Edeoga.
Prof Eze, charged academic staff to embrace the new trends in education in order to discharge their duties effectively. He expressed delight that the conference provided a robust platform for academics to discuss new findings in research and other remarkable trends in the education sector and urged the participants to leverage on the various presentations by scholars at the conference to retool their competence.
He bemoaned the declining standard of education and tasked teacher training institutions in the country to raise the bar and save the system from collapse.
Recall that the National President, COEASU, Nuhu Ogirima, had earlier commended Dr Okoli for her labour-friendly disposition that has helped to resolve the lingering dispute and staff agitations in the College. The President described her as an asset to the College, and expressed optimism that her tenure would be eventful.
Ogirima gave the commendation when he led other national executives and ex-officio members to the College on Friday, April 5, 2019. Present during the visit were former President, Mohammed Awwal, Emmanuel Asagha and other executive members of the union, from the national and zonal levels.