The Academic Staff Union of Polytechnic (ASUP) Zone-A has accused the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, of going against the Federal Polytechnic Act with the appointment of a sole administrator for the Federal Polytechnic, Bida.
The appointment of the sole administrator, according to the union, is illegal and an abuse of law.
In a statement signed by the Zonal Coordinator of ASUP, Dr Kasim Ibrahim, the union said it’s forced to express its displeasure over the reappointment of the Rector of The Federal Polytechnic Bida, Dr Abdul Abubakar Dzukogi, for a four-year tenure even when it was clear abinitio that he had less than four years to proceed on retirement.
He said: “We consider this not only as an aberration of the law but an error of commitment perpetuated against the spirit and provision of the Polytechnic Act, 2019 as amended.
“Section 8, sub-section 2.ai of the Act stipulates that: ‘qualifications of the persons who may apply for the post, which shall be a Chief Lecturer in the Polytechnic sector with at least five years’ experience on that position among other criteria.
“Section 14, subsection 4 which provides for retirement clearly states that: ‘Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in the Pensions Reform Act, the compulsory retirement age of staff of the Polytechnics shall be 65 years” and section 16 subsection 4 in unambiguous terms states that “there shall be no Sole Administration in any Polytechnic in Nigeria.’”
The statement, however, added that the Ministry of Education argued and presented the superiority of a circular (HCSF/EMS/EIR/B.636994/IV/T2/96) in 2009 signed by Office of the Head of Service of the Federation to be superior over the Federal Polytechnic Act, 2019 as amended and passed into LAW by National Assembly Members and assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari in 2019.
The statement added: “It is unimaginable that a circular written by individuals for a reason best known to them can replace a Law of the Land.
“This act can be described as a clear manifestation of a situation where the interest of individuals supersedes the general interest of Nigerians and Nigeria as against the campaign mantra of the current administration willingness and commitment to adherence to the rule of law.”
The union called on President Muhammadu Buhari and well-meaning Nigerians to intervene by compelling the appointing authorities to, in the interest of peace and industrial harmony, call on the Federal Ministry of Education, particularly the Honourable Minister of Education, Mal. Adamu Adamu, who has been mute, to reverse itself by correcting this stern anomaly and non-warrantable condo.
It stated that the Head of Service of the Federation should also rise in defence of Civil Service rules that is being jeopardised by this singular action of the Federal Ministry of Education.
The union also called on concerned authorities as a matter of necessity to direct Dr A.A Dzukogi to immediately vacate the Office of the Rector and Acting Rector be appointed as the staying of the former is illegal and contravenes the extant law among other demands.