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$221m Spent By Nigerians on Foreign Education Between Dec 2021 & Feb 2022  – CBN Reveals

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University - Investors King

In the wake of incessant strike actions by academic and non-academic unions in Nigeria, Nigerians have found solace in studying abroad to get adequate education. 

The Central bank of Nigeria (CBN), in a recent report, has now shown that Nigerians spent nothing less than $220.86m on foreign education in three months (between December 2021 and February 2022). 

According to the CBN data on the amount spent on educational service under the sectoral utilisation for transactions valid for foreign exchange for December 2021 to February 2022, in December 2021, the bank spent $90.67m on foreign education. Later in January, it spent a total of $60,202,730.84 on foreign education, while a sum of $69.9m was spent in February 2022.

According to a report by Punch, the CBN has not yet published the amount it spent in March, April and May, but has noted that the amount it indicated in December 2021 and January 2022 “might be subject to change in future.”

“This data from the apex bank shows that Nigerians remitted more than $220m to foreign academic institutions in three months without a notable “reciprocity” in form of inflows from foreign sources to the local education sector,” Punch reported.

The huge net dollar outflows has a two-way effect on the countries economy – an underinvestment in domestic education and creating pressure on the naira exchange rate. This is as a result of high demands for dollars to pay foreign educational institutions which affects Nigeria’s foreign reserves and increases pressure on the exchange rate.

Investors King gathered that over 70 thousand Nigerians were studying abroad as of 2018, according to the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation. This is the highest from an African country.

During an interview with the media, National President, Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, Dr. Anderson Ezeibe, said the failure of the government to adequately fund education in Nigeria has negatively impacted the sector.

“You go to tertiary institutions and you see dilapidated buildings, lecturers and students alike are not happy, students do not have access to good equipment for practicals, at the end of the day, the system continues to churn out half-baked graduates.

“The only solution to this is for the government to invest fully in the sector. If we operate world-class schools in the country, there will be no need for people to go to other countries to obtain a good education”, he said.

The Convener, Reform Education sector, Olubunmi Olusanmi also noted that there is a need for the government to speedily increase its investment in the education sector.

“Education is the bedrock of any nation, you cannot neglect that sector and say you want to focus on infrastructure. Nigerians go to other countries to avoid some of the drama that goes on in our local schools.  Talks of strikes have been annual festivals and we have all seen it as normal.

 “We cannot continue to go on like this. The truth is that many individuals who have the resources or who can struggle to get the resources will continue to go out and get better quality education. The government needs to do better.”

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Education

ASUU Says no Resumption Yet, Extends Strike by Another Three Months

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Following the failure to reach a consensus with the Federal Government, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has extended its ongoing strike by 12 weeks. This is coming two months after the first phase of the strike commenced.

Investors King recalls that ASUU had previously gone on a warning strike which commenced on February 14, 2022 and was meant to come to an end on Monday, May 9, 2022.

In a statement on Monday, the National President of ASUU, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke revealed that the decision to extend the strike was unanimously taken during the association’s National Executive Council meeting, which commenced on Sunday night at the University of Abuja’s Comrade Festus Iyayi National Secretariat.

According to him, the decision is aimed at giving the government adequate time to resolve all remaining concerns satisfactorily.

He noted that the NEC had earlier authorized the national leadership to commence on an indefinite strike if no significant results were achieved during the eight-week warning strike.

“After extensive deliberations, noting the Government’s failure to live up to its responsibilities and speedily address all the issues raised in the 2020 FGN/ASUU Memorandum of Action (MoA) within the additional eight-week roll–over strike period declared on 14th March 2022, NEC resolved that the strike be rolled over for twelve weeks to give Government more time to satisfactorily resolve all the outstanding issues.

“The roll-over strike action is with effect from 12.01 a.m. on Monday, 9th May 2022″, the statement read.

Investors King gathered that while ASUU was on its warning strike, other university staff unions also went on strike. They include: Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU); The National Association of Academic Technologists; (NAAT), and the Non-Academic Staff Union of Education and Allied institutions, (NASU).

Meanwhile, the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has vowed to disrupt all political events by the two major parties, as well as all candidate selection activities if the ASUU continues with the strike action.

The association condemned politicians for being unconcerned about students’ situation while being preoccupied with their own ‘selfish and irrational quest’ to contest for presidency.

In view of this, students from various institutions have continued to stage protests in Ibadan, Abuja and Lagos, calling for the strike to end, as well as the reopening of universities.

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JAMB Releases 2022 UTME Mock Result

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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board has released the results of the 2022 mock Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination conducted on Saturday, April 9 2022.

This was officially disclosed by JAMB in its Weekly Bulletin on Monday, April 11 in Abuja.

’The results of the Mock-UTME conducted on Saturday, 9th April, 2022, have been released.

“Consequently, candidates who sat for the examination are to visit www.jamb.gov.ng and click on ‘2022 Mock Result Checking’ and input their UTME registration number to access their results.’’

Investors King gathered that a total of 175,978 candidate indicated interested to sit the mock examination in 757 centres in 105 examination towns across the country.

According to Jamb, the optional exercise was introduced by the Board to give candidates the opportunity to familarise themselves with the Computer-Based Testing (CBT) environment.

The Registrar of the board, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, who spoke to NAN after the Saturday exercise, had expressed satisfaction over the conduct of the exercise nationwide.

Prof. Oloyede said that the candidates who wrote the mock examination were limited to only one session which started from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.

He also assured that the board and all the Computer Based Tests centres were ready for the conduct of the 2022 main examination coming up from May 6 to May 16.

NAN reports that a total of 1.8 million candidates were registered for this year’s main UTME.

Investors King further gathered from information shared on JAMB Monday bulletin that N1,514,584,300 was paid to CBT centres as service charges for UTME/DE 2022 registration exercise. This Includes N123,833,200 paid to CBT centers last week for candidates who obtained the ePINs before the closure of the sale of 2022 ePINs on Friday, 26th March 2022.

 

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Strike Action to Linger Till May – ASUU

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has disclosed in a statement that its strike action has been extended by two more months. The union revealed this decision at a prolonged meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC).

The NEC meeting was held at the union’s national secretariat at the University of Abuja. The meeting was said to have started on Sunda, 13th March and stretched to early Monday, 14th March.

During the meeting, ASUU accused the Nigerian government of insensitivity and peddling lies, stating that the Muhammadu Buhari-led country is not paying close attention to the union. “Yes, we have extended the strike by eight weeks pending when the Nigerian government would find the university system worthy of the desired attention,” A member of the NEC who preferred anonymity told newsmen.

The spokesperson also revealed that a secular is currently being drafted to that effect and will be available soon.

Investors King recalls that the union had, in February, warned the Nigerian government against misleading the public.

ASUU also denied the alleged failure of its proposed University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS), by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA). ASUU President, Mr. Emmauel Osodeke, revealed this in a statement made available to newsmen on Sunday in Abuja.

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy and Director-General, NITDA, Mr Isa Pantami, had earlier accused the union of failing both at the UTAS and at an ‘integrity test.’

Speaking to journalists, the president of the union revealed: “This press statement is necessitated by the need for ASUU to put the records straight on the grounds already covered in our patriotic struggle to get the government to deploy UTAS as a suitable solution for salary payment in our university system. Let us put it on record that an integrity test was carried out by NITDA on Aug. 10, 2021, in NUC where relevant government agencies and all the end-users in the University system were present. At the end of the exercise, all, without exception, expressed satisfaction with UTAS as a suitable solution for salary payment in our universities. This was attested to by the report coming from NITDA then to the effect that UTAS scored 85 per cent in User Acceptance Test (UAT).”

Emmanuel also disclosed that the NITDA Technical Team, had conducted a comprehensive functionality test that reported that out of 687 test cases, 529 cases were satisfactory, 156 cases queried and two cases cautioned.

The union’s worry is that while the process is still ongoing, the NITDA went ahead to claim that ASUU had failed the integrity test.

The update has sent a wave of many Nigerians who have taken to the social media platform, Twitter, to tweet their reaction.

Many have pointed out how the strike has affected them and how the country’s education should be placed in a state of emergency.

Here are a few reactions

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