Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has pledged the support of the Federal Government for positive initiatives from all stakeholders in the Nigeria project.
He said this on Tuesday when he received in audience the new Executive Committee of the FCT Branch of University of Lagos Alumni Association led by its Chairman, Aliu Akoshile.
Professor Osinbajo who said he felt greatly honoured by the visit noted that alumni associations can play significant roles in supporting the federal government in its drive for socio-economic development of the country.
Reacting to issues raised by Aliu Akoshile, Professor Osinbajo disclosed that the federal government was planning independent power plants for some universities in Nigeria to mitigate their recurrent expenses on power consumption and free the funds for other infrastructures.
The Vice President also reiterated the commitment of the federal government to reviewing the disparity in the pension being paid civil servants who retired decades ago and the recent retirees.
He said the review may lead to some forms of harmonisation that will ensure justice and equity for all retirees who have given their best services to the nation. The Vice President who congratulated the new executive committee of the branch on their election said he was proud to be a member of the FCT Branch.
Earlier in his speech, the Branch Chairman, Aliu Akoshile said Osinbajo, as the Vice President, is holding the highest political office any alumnus has attained in Nigeria’s Fourth Republic since 1999.
He said members of the FCT Branch who are being inspired by his sense of loyalty and impeccable record of public service will continue to offer support where necessary to ensure he succeeds in the onerous tasks of governance.
The Chairman lamented the huge recurrent expenditure being incurred by universities noting that University of Lagos for instance was spending about N85 million monthly on electricity alone whereas the fund could have been used to provide other basic infrastructures on campus.
Mr. Akoshile who also urged the federal government to ensure parity or judicious harmonisation of pensions payable to retired civil servants said the pioneer Chairman of FCT Branch, 76-year-old Engr. James Bassey, is being paid N15,000 monthly pension as a retired federal Director.
He expressed appreciation to Vice President Osinbajo for granting the audience despite his very tight schedule.
Mr. Akoshile said FCT Branch is blessed with high profile members including the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, five Honourable Ministers and many heads of parastatals and agencies as well as accomplished entrepreneurs in the private sector.
Also present at the meeting were the deputy chief of staff to the President, office of Vice President, Mr. Rahman Ade Ipaye and Senior Special Adviser to the President, VP’s Office, Senator Femi Ojudu, both alumni members too, and Senior Special Assistant Media, Dr. Laolu Akande.
The Chairman, Aliu Akoshile was accompanied on the visit by Dupe Nelson, Vice Chairman, Jaiyeola ‘Wale-Balogun, General Secretary, and Wole Abraham, Financial Secretary.
Others were Ifewunmi Ajiboye, Treasurer, Phyllis Nweke, Welfare Secretary, Julia Davids, Publicity Secretary, and Oluwafemi Ayodeji, Assistant Secretary.
The new Exco whose tenure runs from 2021 to 2023 includes Enitan Oguntola, Social Secretary, and two ex-officio members, Tijani Mohammed, immediate past Chairman and Bola Saliu, immediate past Vice Chairman.