Partnering ICPC for transparency and fiscal discipline in tertiary institutions’ administration (3)
CONTINUED FROM THURSDAY 12/11/2015
Impressed with this lofty achievement, Council has approved and even constituted a Committee saddled with the establishment of branches of these schools across the three senatorial zones of the state. This is with a view to further contributing to the educational development of Ondo State and as a way of boosting our IGR.
A lot of restructuring is currently going regarding appropriate placement and redeployment of staff in these schools in order to comply with the decision of the Federal government on the fate of workers in the schools. A Committee comprising the representatives of Management and all our unions is about submitting its report on this very important assignment.
Price monitoring and intelligence unit
In order to achieve probity, accountability and transparency, Management would be putting in a place a Price Monitoring and Intelligence Unit under the office of the Provost. This important unit is long overdue considering the yearly expenditure of the College on capital development, utilities, contract-based and re-current overheads items running well over N3.5 billion.
My observations in the last one year has revealed that the College is not insulated from the possible risks of over-pricing, purchase fraud, purchase of inferior or sub-standard items, and contract over-pricing which presently characterize the procurement processes in the Nigerian public sector. This ugly menace remains unabated despite the enactment of the 2007 Public Procurement Act. Therefore, the regular savings that will be accruing to the College from the surveillance and monitoring activities of this Unit from time to time provides enough justification for its establishment. The deployment of the ePPMS software would guarantee prompt and greater access to price and project information with its robust price database and effective project monitoring tools, it would also make the procurement operations more transparent, thus reducing the opportunity for corruption.
In order to bridge the communication gap between the office the Provost and members of staff and discourage rumour mongering, a special gsm line has been dedicated for prompt response to your enquiries on any issue that has to do with the progress of the departments. For any issue that needs immediate clarification from the Provost kindly send an ‘sms’ to this number (09082780060 SMS ONLY) with your question, your name and Department/Unit. Management will also be introducing a weekly online news bulletin that will serve as a recap of the activities of the previous week and which will outline the major events lined up for the new week. It will be sent to staff email addresses every Monday and will also be archived permanently on our website.
Major administrative restructuring
Since we came on board we have relied basically on the governance structure that we met on ground in terms the existing composition of statutory committees, directorates, schools, etc. This is a clear demonstration of our liberal approach to governance and that the Provost is a tolerant team player. Having spent a year in the saddle, it is ripe to inject and reinvigorate the governance structure by way of major administrative restructuring. In the next few weeks, a new Deputy Provost will be announced, along with other necessary administrative restructuring for better service delivery.
ACE suspended university status
I have reserved this aspect to the last moment because it is the dearest thing to my heart as far as my vision for this College is concerned. I have always had on top of the list of my vision for this College the upgrading of the College to a university. I have put a lot of energy into this objective, with periods of sleepless nights and strategic planning. The age-long aspiration became a reality with the Federal Executive Council’s pronouncement of Adeyemi College of Education as a university alongside three other Federal Colleges of Education on Wednesday 20th of May, 2015.
At the risk of sounding immodest, I can say that there is no gainsaying the fact that my resilience and the tactics employed in pushing this desire were instrumental to that historic pronouncement. This pronouncement came only a week after the College was adjudged the best among 99 colleges of education in Nigeria. However, in a dramatic twist, the Federal government decided to put the new status on hold on the 7th of August 2015. This development has generated a lot of rumour, rancour and ill feelings in several quarters as some persons within and outside the College have gone about spreading the notion that some individuals worked against the university status.
For anybody who is familiar with the nature of official bureaucracy in Nigeria and the developing world, it is obvious that the decision to put our hard earned university status on hold could have been taken weeks before the official letter came out. To me the implications of the lies, mischiefs and intrigues that reared their ugly heads during the month of August regarding the University status will forever make that era a dark month in the history of this institution until we permanently achieve our objective as Adeyemi Federal University of Education (AFUED). That is why I like to quote the immediate past Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC) Prof. Peter Okebukola from his interview with the Guardian Newspaper of Thursday, September 3, 2015, Prof Okebukola argues, “I think we should interpret the presidential directives correctly.