Prof. Muktar Umar-Bunza Commissioner for Higher Education with four other Commissioners briefing Journalists shortly after Executive Council Meeting at Government House Birnin Kebbi on Wednesday

Kebbi State Government has assured the 439 academic and non-academic staff of the College of Agriculture, Zuru, that the upgrade of the college to a Federal University of Agriculture would not affect their status as staff.

Prof. Muktar Umar-Bunza, Kebbi State Commissioner for Higher Education, made the disclosure while briefing journalists shortly after State Executive Council meeting in Birnin Kebbi on Wednesday.

He said that all the academic and non-academic staff of the college would be absorbed by the university.

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The commissioner said: “Part of what was presented to the council was the progress report regarding the establishment of the Federal University of Agriculture.

“You are all aware that His Excellency and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari, graciously approved and accented to the Bills by the Senate recommending the establishment of Federal University of Agriculture, Zuru.

“The university is to take up at the existing College of Agriculture owned by the state government.

“The Council and Chairman of the Council, His Excellency, Sen. Attiku Abubakar Bagudu received the news with delight.

“His Excellency pledged to do whatever is possible within government resources to see to the successful take-off of the university.”

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Umar-Bunza said based on the submission made, the state government would provide the land, adding that it would also allow the state-owned college to serve as a take-off site for the university.

“Taking into consideration the fate of staff and students of the college, you know it is an existing institution which is over 40 years old, so, taking it over is also an issue.

“However, His Excellency is concerned about the affairs and welfare of the staff and students, as such, he insisted that we should make sure that no staff or student suffer in the cause of the transition.

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“So, as far as the take-up is concerned, the state government has accepted and approved it.

“We are only waiting to see that we resolve the issues of handing or taking over of staff and students,” he noted.