As heavy fighting continues between Ukrainian military and separatists in Donetsk and Lugansk regions, the Ukrainian Ministry of Education and Science has offered to transfer Nigerian students studying in universities in the regions to the safer central and western regions to continue their education.
At least 2,000 Nigerians are studying in the two regions. About 1,650 of them have already transferred to safer regions or returned home to Nigeria. The remaining 350 remain trapped in the regions.
According to a statement issued by the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Abuja yesterday, Ukrainian authorities have requested all the Nigerian students in the troubled regions to urgently forward their names, passport numbers, name of their institutions, courses, year of study and alternative universities within Ukraine, to either the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, East and Central European Affairs Division Abuja or Nigerian Embassy in Kiev.
“Such required details will enable the Ukrainian Ministry of Education and Science to transfer the students to universities in safer central and western regions of the country to continue their studies,” the statement read.
The Foreign Ministry urged all parents and guardians whose wards are studying in the crisis regions of Ukraine to take urgent steps to “get this information across to them wherever they may be for appropriate action”.
About 5000 Nigerians are said to be studying in various universities across Ukraine.
Caption: Niger State Governor, Dr. Muazu Babangida Aliyu
Niger East By-election: Aliyu Admits was Toughest in History
Aisha Wakaso in Minna
Niger State Governor, Dr. Muazu Babangida Aliyu, yesterday stated that the just concluded senatorial by-election to fill the Niger East seat was the toughest election he had ever encountered in his political history.
Aliyu, who disclosed this yesterday in Minna when he received the senator-elect, Dr. Nuhu Shem Zagbayi, in government house, said the difficulty of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) winning the election got him worried, adding that he had to do some analyses as to the root cause of the near loss situation despite the provision of infrastructures for the people.
“We thank God for giving us victory in this election. After the election, I took time to analyse what went wrong because since I started running for political offices in 1983, this is the toughest election I have ever encountered.”
Aliyu also stated that the reason the election was a tough nut for the PDP to crack in the state was not as a result of the opposition the All Progressives Congress (APC) but as a result of enemies within the camp of the PDP who worked against the party during the election.
“After my analysis, I realised that the election was tough not because of the opposition, and if you will all analyse it, you will realise that we were not competing with opposition but we were competing with people who claimed to be members of the PDP but were working against us.”
“Some did it for selfish reasons, some did it for revenge and most importantly, some did it for greed.”
He further stated that greed by some politicians who did not allow the funds released by the government to trickle down was responsible for the near lose of the area.
“Some also where given money to use for the election, and they did not use it. Some people sat down, calculated what it would cost us to take care of our agents, it was given and yet it did not get to some of them.”
Aliyu stated that the PDP in the country and states are in for a more challenging period come 2015.
He therefore, urged politicians to go back to their people and begin to explain to them, adding that there should be a symbiotic relationship between the electorate, elected and the party.
“We must get more serious and do not take anything for granted; we have to go back to the drawing board; we must have winning strategies unlike what we were doing before.”
Aliyu also stated that he and the party would go on a thank you visit to the wards that gave the party the highest votes in the nine local government councils where the election was held in the state.