By Funmilayo Adeyemi
Managing Director, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Buki Ponle has called on the University of Lagos (UNILAG) Alumni Association to work with other stakeholders to end incessant strikes in tertiary institutions nationwide.
Ponle made the call in Abuja on Thursday when a delegation of the FCT branch of the association led by its Chairman, Mr Aliu Akoshile, paid him a courtesy visit.
On the issue of strikes in the nation’s universities, Ponle said that alumni associations should come together to minimise if not completely eliminate incessant strikes that are affecting the education sector.
“I am a parent and just like anyone, we have children going through mental retardation as a result of strikes. We need to come together to proffer solutions to address the challenges in the sector,” he said.
The managing director also urged the association to harness the huge potential resources available in various sectors to make the country a great nation.
He called on the association to take a look at the educational ranking among committee of nations to ensure that the tertiary institutions are repositioned to take the lead.
“Our current ranking of universities cannot be compared with other nations. All along we have not fared well to show what we are capable of doing.
“When we go out we excel, why can’t we demonstrate same excellent at home? Because charity they say begins at home.
“Excellence in terms of research, teaching, global outlook. In one way or the other, we have a role to play for the development and interest to lead our country and how we want it to be.
“We can achieve this through our collective efforts,” he said.
On the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic ravaging the world, he said there was a need to tap into the technological advancement of the world so as not to be left behind.
Speaking earlier, Akoshile pledged the association’s commitment to contribute to the development of the country.
Akoshile said that the association sought to promote the UNILAG brand to contribute to the society and promote the welfare of its members.
“The survival and sustenance of democracy can be made or marred by the activities of the media practitioners and we are very happy our member is today heading one of the media organisations.
“The reason for our coming is to felicitate the MD and to encourage him to pursue those things that made it possible for the government to ask him to come back.
“And, to keep him abreast of the fact that this year will be the 25th year the association was inaugurated in Abuja.
“We are looking towards having our silver jubilee this year and seeking to promote the growth of UNILAG brand,” he said.
He, therefore, called on NAN management to continue to support the association in its membership drive which would allow for the development of the association and the nation at large. (NAN)