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Obaseki-Politics over for next 3 years; Employment standards in universities unacceptable.

Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has disclosed that with the close of the legal battle, which accompanied his declaration as the governor of Edo State, he was ready to work for the state and eschew the distractions of politics.

He said this at a thanksgiving service at New Covenant Gospel Church in Benin City, the Edo State Capital, where he appreciated God for his victory, and noting that as the unlikely governorship candidate for the September 28th 2016 governorship election in Edo State, it was God that favoured him to win the election.

His words, “Politics is over, at least for the next three years. I dedicate myself to working for everyone and Edo state. I call on you to pray to God that what my administration has achieved in the last eight months will be a tip of the iceberg compare to what God will use us and help us to achieve.”

The governor also expressed belief that his administration would make Edo people smile, and not regret giving him the mandate to govern the state.

“Our people have not forgotten where they come from, that is why I believe that our people will support the government to deliver on its electioneering promises to make the state great. Seeking the governorship office was not my idea as people received the vision for me, including my wife.

“I got confirmation from people. I thank them all and especially God for the support and the victory all the way. The campaign was tough, the primary was difficult, the economy was bad, we were in recession but God still helped us win the election,” he concluded.

President of the National Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) Rev. Felix Omobude congratulated the governor for his victory, assuring him that the victory portrayed God’s stance with him.

Represented by Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Edo State Chapter, Bishop Dr. Oriname Oyonnude Kure, Omobude said the Church was behind Governor Obaseki, and would rally round him to succeed.

“God is with you on this journey. He has given you victory all round, and you must rule the people with the fear of God,” he said.

In another development, Governor Obaseki has spoken against employment standards in universities, pointing out that universities were not established to create jobs, but to advance learning, promote research, and develop cultured students.

He stated this at the 21st Convocation Ceremony of Ambrose Alli University (AAU), Ekpoma, which held during the weekend at the University’s Auditorium in Edo State, where he was also installed as the visitor of the institution.

The governor noted that many universities had deviated from their primary aim of promoting research and development, and concentrated on employing too many non-academic staff.

“The University needs all levels of supportive staff, but the current practice where the number of non-academic staff outweighs the numbers of academic staff and researchers is not acceptable, not tenable and unsustainable.

“Universities should, through investment, efficient management of fund, partnership with private and government sectors, grants from internal bodies, and alumni associations, thrive to be self-sustaining”, he advised.

He continued that universities should check waste and corruption and stop relying on the government for subvention, because the government is almost broke, while also tasking them on publication of journals, innovations, and technology advancement of students to make them relevant in the digital age.

Vice Chancellor of the Institution, Prof Ignatius Onimawo, said the Ivory Tower had achieved numerous successes in the areas of Fibre Optic technology, infrastructural development, Internally Generated revenue as well as accreditation of the 64 programmes of the institution.

He, however, urged the governor to encourage partnership in investments to boost IGR for the school, highlighting other challenges, which were impeding progress, including lack of perimeter fencing, construction and tarring of roads within the campus, building of a VC lodge, completion of the administrative building, and provision of more students’ accommodation.

He further commended the state governor for prompt release of monthly subvention, which, he noted, allowed payment of staff’s salaries as at when due, while the Chancellor of the Ivory Tower, Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar, attributed the giant strides of the institution to the enabling environment provided by the state.

The Chancellor commended the governor for mobilizing the contractors working on the Administrative building back to site noting that the completion of the project would solve the problems of offices for its staff.

He also commended the Governing Council, Members of staff and students for the enhancement of peace and unity in the university.

There was also presentation of Honorary degrees on three distinguished Nigerians, which include Chief Tony Elumelu (Business Administration), Dr. Mathew Okpebholo (Engineering) and Dr. Robson Momoh (Literature).

The University awarded Post Graduate Degrees to 130 graduands, with a breakdown of 40 Post Graduate Diplomas, 76 Masters Degrees and 14 Doctorate Degrees, while 2,265 graduands were awarded First Degrees.

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