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Reps Want Lectures Suspended In Tertiary Schools During Polls



The House of Representatives has passed a motion directing that academic activities be put on hold at the nation’s tertiary institutions during the forthcoming General Election.

The House in the motion urged the National Universities Commission (NUC), National Board for Technical Education (NABTE), National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE), and the Ministry of Education to halt academic activities so as to allow students to travel to the locations of their voting units to enable them exercise their voting rights.

It also requested for special arrangements for students to pick up their PVCs at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The House resolution followed a motion sponsored by Kabir Ibrahim, from Zuru/Fakai/Danko-Wasagu/Sakaba federal constituency, Kebbi State.

The academic calendars of various tertiary institutions are “structured in a way that most students are disenfranchised as school calendars do not take into consideration the timelines and date for elections,” according to Ibrahim.

He noted that there are over 2.1 million students enrolled in universities and over 2.4 million in polytechnics, monotechnics, and colleges of education.

Additionally, he disclosed that 3.8 million of the newly registered voters—or 40.8 percent of all newly registered voters—according to a report issued by INEC—were students.

These students, who make up 40.8% of the newly registered voters, must travel outside of their respective campuses to cast their ballots in the 2023 elections because the voting places are located in other states.

“Despite the fact that the majority of students registered to vote away from their campuses during the ongoing voter registration drive that took place during the protracted Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike, tertiary institutions are not considering academic breaks for students during the general elections.

Following the motion’s unanimous approval, the house instructed the committees on tertiary education and electoral concerns to “liaise with the agencies to facilitate the process” and provide a follow-up within a week.

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