National President, Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, Prof. Chibuzo Asomugha, and Chairman, ASUP, Federal Polytechnic Offa, Dr Shola Ojeniyi, have called on the Federal Government to review the current state of Nigerian polytechnics.
They stated that a mechanism should allow practitioners and all stakeholders evolve a model for polytechnic education that can fit into contemporary times, especially in meeting up with global standards.
They spoke on Saturday at the 81st National Executive Council meeting of ASUP in Offa, Kwara State.
Asomugha said jumping into the fray will not help Nigeria, as that is what has been happening in the country.
According to him, there had been disconcerted efforts at policy-making concerning technical education in Nigeria. He added that government need to draw up a refurbished template.
Stating the many challenges facing polytechnic education in the country, Asomugha said, “There is no understanding of what we really want polytechnic education to be. We have deviated from the original vision and there is no focus. There is hardly any technical intent in the delivery of polytechnic education and we must return to the basis.
“This dovetails into what happens in the wider economy, in the industries and private sector. There is no contact between the industries and the schools. We are just producing polytechnic graduates without being able to know where they will fit in.”
He also noted that President Muhammadu Buhari mentioned during his campaigns that he was going to look at the issue of discrimination against Higher National Diploma graduates.
He added that there are thousands of Nigerians seeking tertiary education in polytechnics.
Decrying the higher learning admission structure, he pointed out that the system is structured in such a way that students making choices of polytechnic education are viewed as not meeting up to the standard of university education. He urged the government to look at the issues completely.
Asomugha said, “There is paucity in funding which eventually is derived from the perception of polytechnic education in the minds of policy makers. When you don’t consider that a system is serious enough then you don’t give it serious consideration in fund.
“We tasked the past government to monitor its funding of the sector. Don’t just throw money in a system. With all the money that government is parading that it has thrown into the system, government has not gotten better result because of lack of proper monitoring.”
Ojeniyi added that polytechnic education is currently suffering from ineptitude and appealed to the Federal Government to focus on polytechnic education in Nigeria.