Hammed Shittu in Ilorin
The Kwara State government said it has not approved any staff of the college to go on compulsory leave without pay or in any of tertiary institutions in the state.
The clarification might have been prompted by reports that a meeting was recently held by the board of the governing council of the College where a decision was taken that majority of the state of the aviation school would go on leave without pay.
Reports had also indicated that after the alleged decision was taken, it was sent to the state governor, Alhaji Abdulrahman Abdulrasaq for approval and implementation, but the governor was said to have rejected the decisions of the board of governing council of the institution and directed that the status quo should be maintained.
This was confirmed by a statement issued in Ilorin by the state Commissioner for Tertiary Education, Science and Technology, Alhaja Sa’adatu Kawu Modibo, which stated that there was no any such approvals for that decisions by the state governor, as being raised in certain quarters in the state.
According to the statement, “In March 2020, in the interest of public safety as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the government directed all its employees to work from home until further notice.
“That subsisting directive covered all employees in Kwara State establishments, including the Aviation College and there was no decision for anyone to go on leave without pay.”
The Commissioner also said, “I will like to place on record that this administration has on several occasions approved special intervention funds for the International Aviation College.
“In January, 2020, for instance, N19.460 million was approved and released to the college to pay the salaries of its staff; its aviation insurance fees; and other items needed for smooth flight operations.
“The students of the college are presently on standard pilot course 16, and flight dispatch course 6 — thanks to the administration.
“It is also important to state that the college is presently enjoying virtual learning access, the first of such since the College was established”.
Modibo said the present administration would continue to prioritise the welfare of staff and students, while ensuring accessible and qualitative learning in all our institutions.
“We recognise that the world is facing serious economic crisis at this time and Kwara is not immune. Even then, the Ministry of Tertiary Institution, Science and Technology has not approved any pay cut or leave without pay for any category of workers at this time. To this extent, the decision for pay cut or leave without pay is hereby reversed with immediate effect”, he said.