Jonathan Approves Establishment of Federal Polytechnic of Oil and Gas in Rivers

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Federal Government yesterday approved the establishment of Federal Polytechnic of Oil and Gas in Bonny, Rivers State with a takeoff grant of N1billion for the Polytechnic to commence academic activities.

Also, the Presidential Committee on NEEDs Assessment of Public polytechnics and Colleges of Education has urged the Federal government to allocate money for rehabilitation of public Polytechnics and colleges of Education across the country.

Chairperson of the NEEDs committee, Mrs. Hindatu Abdullahi, stated this at the public presentation of the report of NEEDS Assessment of public Polytechnics and colleges of Education in the country in Abuja.They also recommended that all workshops in Polytechnics and Colleges of Education be linked to the National Power grid so as to support quality teaching and learning in the institutions.

President Goodluck Jonathan also approved the appointment of Professor Elijah Tamuno Iyagba as Rector, while Mr. Willabo A. Gilbert is to serve as the Registrar.

The President further approved the appointment of Mr Akpomeyoma Gabriel as Bursar and Mr Ata John Woke Ajala as Polytechnic Librarian.

The Supervising Minister of Education, Barr. Ezenwo Nyesom Wike described the establishment of the Federal Polytechnic of Oil and Gas in Bonny, as a practical expression of the President’s commitment to improving access to tertiary education, creation of employment and the empowerment of the youths with the necessary skills to contribute to national development.

Meanwhile, the Chairperson of the NEEDs committee, Mrs. Hindatu Abdullahi, said from the findings of the committee members it was discovered that physical infrastructure were inadequate, while available ones were utilised beyond the installed capacity.

It would be recalled that President Goodluck Jonathan in May 2013 approved the constitution of the Needs Assessment committees of Nigerian public Polytechnics and colleges of Education that was later inaugurated by supervising Minister for education, Barr. Nyesom Wike on October 28, 2013.

The committee were expected to ascertain the state of physical infrastructure, human and material resources, academic programmes, students’ environment and funding requirements of public polytechnics and colleges of education.

According to her, “The report contain the findings and recommendations of the committee based facts figures and tangible evidence gathered from institutions visited.

“Some of the findings in both polytechnics and colleges of education generally showed that, all categories of physical facilities are grossly inadequate, while available ones are utilised beyond the installed capacity, some vital learning resources are not available, the enrolment policy of 60:40 ratio for Science and arts based courses in colleges of education and 70:30 in favour of science/technology and arts/social sciences in polytechnics is not implemented.

“In some institutions the teacher-student ratio is low, most of the institutions do not have on-campus hostel while available ones are overcrowded, poorly lit and not adequately ventilated and in a state of disrepair  and municipal facilities are inadequate and in poor condition”.

The committee therefore in the report recommended to the federal government to ensure the completion of all abandoned and ongoing projects in all these schools, rehabilitation and upgrading of facilities, infrastructures that are in the state of disrepair and provision and rehabilitation of students hostels through public private partnership.

They recommended recruitment of qualified teachers and training/retraining of personnel, provision and upgrading of internet connectivity, telecommunication and information services and provision of essential learning resources/materials.

They also called on the federal government to direct  National Commission for Colleges of education, (NCCE),  to ensure that all Colleges of Education in the country running a degree programme should have not less than sixty percent, 60%, PhD holders of the total academic staff strength for each of the Degree courses.

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