Government queries Provost for suspending 20 students who refused to ‘welcome’ PMB during visit

The Borno State Government has issued a query to the provost, College of Nursing and Midwifery, Rukaiya Mustapha, for suspending about 20 students under the claim that they failed to join others in welcoming President Muhammadu Buhari when he visited the school on June 17.

Reacting in a letter on Friday, CRIMECHANNELS learnt that the State Commissioner for Health and Human Services, Juliana Bitrus described the provost of the institution as being mischievous against the government

It was learnt that on Thursday, about 20 students of the institution were suspended for one week from June 21 to June 28 for failing to welcome the President.

A letter which stated their dismissal reads, “You are hereby suspended from the college for one week with effect from today 21st June, 2021 for disobedience of executive order to welcome the President of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, GCON (on the 17th of June 2021).

“You are expected to report back to college on the 28th of June 2021 along with your parent or guardian,” the letter issued to the affected students reads.

Reacting to the development in a query with reference number MOH/PER/752 V.I and dated June 25, the Commissioner demanded that the provost responds within 48 hours, to advance compelling reasons why disciplinary action should not be meted out to her.

The letter read in part, “Even though it is a normal practice that students join in welcoming visiting Presidents all over Nigeria, such acts are voluntary. More so that students constitute far less than thousands of residents who freely trooped out to welcome the President in all parts of Maiduguri.”

“Heads of States and Presidents have been visiting Borno since 1976, and students do join in welcoming them, and no one ever expected 100% compliance in any public mobilisation.”

“If any issue involving students was to be raised, how come it was not the Borno State University, which the President commissioned, or schools around projects commissioned by the President?”

However, responding in a statement titled, ‘Re: The suspension of Student Nurses’, the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives, Borno State chapter, denied that it suspended the students based on their failure to welcome the President.

The statement read, “The National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives Borno State Council, received with dismay the misinterpretation arising from the letter of suspension issued by College of Nursing and Midwifery Maiduguri, Borno State.”

“The Association as a professional body responsible for the conducts of its members, worried by the unfortunate development, quickly paid an unscheduled visit to the management and staff of the college to get first-hand information on the matter at hand.”

“On the strength of the findings and evidence provided, it was revealed that neither the said executive order nor the suspension of the students for refusing to welcome the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria was factual. Rather, there was a misinterpretation of what actually transpired.”

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