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Nigerian polytechnics lack adequate funding

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By Mercy Kelani

SERVICOM and NBTE appeal to FG to allocate adequate fund to polytechnics.

The Service Compact (SERVICOM), due to the lack of sufficient equipment in some polytechnics, questions the establishment of such institutions in the country. This situation of polytechnics was made known at the presentation of the SERVICOM Compliance Evaluation Reports (SCER) of 23 out of 37 polytechnics in Nigeria, by the National Coordinator of SERVICOM, Mrs. Nnenna Akajemeli, to the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE). SERVICOM assesses SCER for the accurate identification of gaps and lapses, strength of MDAs in the aspect of service delivery and recommendations that would aid the improvement of customer satisfaction and accountability.

Polytechnics are established in Nigeria for the sole aim of training technologists, technicians, ND, HND, and Advanced Professional Diploma. These trainings are essential to the needs and developmental goals of the diverse Economy of the nation and its industries. In addition, polytechnic education has a primary objective of promoting technical or vocational education and training, transfer of Technology and also, the development of skills for the enhancement of the socio-economic advancement of the country, and many more.

Polytechnics suffer shortage of academics and non-teaching staff.

In the development of the human resources of a country, polytechnic education is integral through its creation of skilled manpower, enhancement of industrial Productivity, and the improvement of the quality of life. The assessment of polytechnics across the country and the interactions with students by the agency’s team portrayed a number of lapses that required immediate attention in order to meet the mandatory requirements of the standards of education of those institutions. Some of the lapses include low funding, unstable Power Supply, insufficient practical materials, impaired toiletries, poor library facilities, poor laboratory facilities, late attendance of lecturers to lectures, lack of water, and many more.

The unfavorable situation of these institutions has made learning an arduous task for students, thereby making them ineffective to the society even after graduation from school. Asides difficulty on the part of students’ learning, there is also a shortage of teaching and non-teaching staff. This shortage has led to the exhaustive work of the available staff as they try to fill in the gap of the required labor. This eventually leads to an inefficient and ineffective delivery of service.

New innovative ideas will boost technological development in polytechnics.

The National Coordinator of SERVICOM, nevertheless, applauded polytechnics that have provided innovative ideas that would aid the improvement of technological development in Nigeria. One of such polytechnics is the Management of Federal Polytechnic Nekede, Owerri, which produced ‘SMART CAMPUS’ for the online screening, clearance, and registration of courses by students. This idea has led to the reduction of hardships faced by students. Other innovations, achieved by the same polytechnic, are electric car, and drones. These innovations are assurances that the institution is contributing to the improvement of technological development.

Amidst the commendation of the innovative ideas of some polytechnics, SERVICOM urged the NBTE management and concerned agencies to make sure that polytechnics get sufficient and adequate funding for the effectiveness and smooth running of the institutions. Also, adequate funding would help them towards the easy achievement of their mandates, for the benefits of the students and the public, in general. Thus, there should be an increase in the allocation of funds for the effectual productivity of the polytechnic system.

NBTE entreats FG to ensure adequate funding of polytechnics.

The Executive Secretary of the NBTE, Prof. Idris Bugaje, saluted the efforts of the SERVICOM for the presentation of the reports that portrayed the strength and weaknesses for the improvement of service delivery in Nigerian Polytechnic institutions. He therefore appealed to polytechnics to strengthen all areas of weaknesses, improve on their strength, and close all gaps. President Muhammadu Buhari was also urged to see to the approval of the recruitment of lecturers for polytechnics in the country, considering the Retirement of the capable ones. In addition, the federal government was entreated to look into the adequate funding of these institutions.


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