The Kaduna State government says it is willing to sack any health worker that participates in the planned strike by the congress of health workers unions and associations in the state. The state has opened a register to be signed by those who want to work despite the cut in pay.
Special adviser to the governor on media and communication, Muyiwa Adekeye, said in a statement, government would not be misled into granting health workers a special status among public servants.
The congress of health workers unions and associations in Kaduna state had demanded the refund of a quarter of their salaries that were cut by the state government. There was also a demand for provision of personal protective equipment.
In response to the union’s threat of a strike, the government says anyone who fails to show up for work would be fired. The government says its health facilities would keep running and staff who want to work woul be protected. The government says it would not yield to blackmail.
The state government also said every Kaduna State government worker was affected by the monthly salary cut that came into effect in April, from the governor to the lowest rank. The government says the health workers are even being paid an allowance for occupational safety initiative as high risk staff. That compensation is said to be fifteen thousand naira per day. Medium risk employees receive ten thousand naira daily.
NCC Insists On NIN Wednesday Deadline
The federal government has maintained its stance on the Wednesday deadline for the registration of all network subscribers on the national identification platform. The Nigeria Communications Commission NCC says its requirement for National Identity Numbers, NIN, is still in force.
Communications minister, Isa Pantami, says NIN is even mandatory for all diplomats in Nigeria, as well as for all other lawful residents across the country. Pantami said enrolment centres have been approved and set up at the foreign affairs ministry for such categories of people.
The federal government had issued a directive last month to all mobile network providers to block telephone lines that are not linked to a valid NIN. Nigerians have been seen in their hundreds at various NIN registration centers seeking to be enrolled.
NCC public affairs director, Ikechukwu Adinde, says the deadline was still in force and there was no update for now. Adinde said on Sunday any changes will be communicated.
On Thursday, it was reported that the NCC was awaiting the advice of the federal government as regards the stipulated deadlines.
“The deadlines are still in force; there is no update for now and just like I told you last week, if there is any change you will be communicated,” Adinde stated on Sunday.
Calls for deadline extension are mainly due to the large crowds that gather daily at the various offices of the National Identity Management Commission, as many telephone subscribers had yet to get their NINs.
Following the widespread opposition to the initial deadline for synchronization, the federal government gave a three-week extension for subscribers with NIN to link their SIM cards from December 30, 2020, to January 19, 2021. It also gave a six-week extension for subscribers without NIN from December 30, 2020, to February 9, 2021
As the nation experiences the second wave of the COVID-19, there have been calls for the deadline for the synchronization of NINs and SIM cards to be extended or better still be suspended.
Parents, Teachers Fearful As Schools Reopen In Lagos State Amid COVID-19 Second Wave
That fear expressed by the network for democracy and development has characterized the reopening of schools on Monday in Lagos State as many parents and wards have decided to keep their children back.
Schools reopened on Monday in line with federal government’s directive, even as the covid-19 second wave continues to bear down on the nation and cases rise.
Public affairs director of the Lagos State ministry of education, Kayode Abayomi, said Lagos is taking steps to ensure schools are safe for students and teachers. He said commissioner of education, Folashade Adefisayo, was visiting schools in different parts of the state to monitor their compliance with COVID-19 protocol guidelines.
Parents and teachers are fearful and apprehensive of the deadlier new strain of coronavirus, and whether schools are well-equipped to put mandatory protocols in place.
If all goes well, this second term of the 2020, 2021 academic session will run for sixty-one days for both public and private schools.
Lawmakers On Education Oppose School Reopening
Nigerian lawmakers committee on education says it opposes school reopening plan that came into effect today, Monday. The committee says it is concerned about the rush to reopen schools amid a new spike of more than 1,000 new daily infections. The committee has asked the federal government to postpone the reopening of schools by three months citing rising COVID-19 cases.
Committee chairman, Julius Ihonvbere, suggests learners should stay at home until schools can report 75% compliance to COVID-19 protocols. The committee also wants the government to first monitor community compliance and schools’ readiness before allowing children back into schools.
Ihonvbere said “aside from Lagos and a couple of other states, governments are unable to enforce COVID-19 protocols. People no longer wear face masks or use sanitizer.”