The Senior Staff Union in Colleges of Education, Nigeria (SSUCOEN) has rejected the appointment of Principal Officers for the six newly established Federal Colleges of Education, saying the beneficiaries of the appointment did not meet the requirements.
SSUCOEN in a letter to the minister of Education said after going through the list of the appointees, it discovered startling revelations which is of serious concern and capable of being counterproductive, and unhealthy to the Colleges of Education subsector.
The letter which was signed by the Union’s president, Danladi Ali Msheliza, listed the appointment to included Federal Colleges of Education at Iwo, Osun State; Gidan Madi, Sokoto State; Odugbo, Benue State; Jama’are, Bauchi State; Isu, Ebonyi State and Ekiadolor, Edo State
It urged President Muhammadu Buhari to set aside the appointments of the Provosts and Principal Officers because their appointments did not meet the requirements for such offices.
“While we acknowledge that we don’t have the powers to determine or dictate who is to be appointed as Principal Officer of any Federal College of Education in Nigeria, because it is only the President who has the powers to appoint Provosts upon recommendations of Council; we owe it a duty to point out infractions & draw the attention of government & other relevant authorities to ensure that due process are followed & right things are done while considering such appointments,” it stated in the letter .
It said 90% of those on the list of appointees, do not meet the requirements for appointment as Principal Officers in Colleges of Education, as provided for in the approved Schemes and Conditions of Service (2015 Edition) for Colleges of Education in Nigeria.
The union also revealed that most of the appointees are either from the Core Civil Service, Private Sector or other sectors outside Colleges of Education System, which is contrary to the provisions for the requirements for the appointment of Principal Officers in Colleges of Education, as contained in the Revised Conditions of Service for Colleges of Education (2015 Edition), and the Act establishing Federal Colleges of Education.
It said besides, the Governing Councils for the new Colleges of Education have been constituted, and it is the Governing Council that have the powers to appoint Principal Officers, as provided for in the Act establishing Federal Colleges of Education and other relevant extant rules and guiding documents.
“One could not help but wonder why the FME rushed to appointPrincipal Officers for the six (6) newly established Federal Colleges of Education, without recourse to the requirements for the appointment of such important positions, especially that Councils were on ground. Had Council not been constituted, it would have been well understood,” its stated.
It said appointment of Principal Officers of any College of Education, by any other person or group, other than its Governing Council, amounts to illegality & usurpation of the powers of Council, stressing that the Act establishing Federal Colleges of Education expressly states that “the Council of each Collegeof Education shall appoint a Registrar, Bursar, Librarian to such College,” upon satisfactory performance & subject to meeting the requirements for appointment into such office(s).
The Union said if its concerns are not urgently addressed, “the Union may be left with no option than to initiate actions that will challenge the observed infractions, in line with the Conditions of Service for Colleges of Education, the subsisting court judgment and other extant laws. The Union’s position is premised on adherence to the rule of law, as preached by the government.”