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Grant polytechnics the right to award degrees — ASUP



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THE federal government has been urged to grant polytechnics in the country the right to award degrees to their students, independent of universities.
The National President, Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), Comrade Chibuzor Asomugha, made the call in Kano when the union conferred an award of excellence on the immediate-past Minister of Education Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau.
Asomugha said the discrimination between polytechnic and university graduates calls for urgent action, including granting the right to award degrees to the former.
“We have pleaded with government to actually grant the polytechnics the right to award degrees we are saying this because we know that government is a continuum and that there are people in this hall, whom we know will, again, control the reins of government in this country and we are praying that when the time comes, they would remember our plea,” he said.
The union boss said it is unfair that polytechnic graduates have to suffer discrimination even though the same lecturers that teach them teach their university counterparts.
“You train a graduate, give him a Bachelor’s degree in Kaduna Polytechnic or Yabatech or Oko, and the certificate would bear ABU or BUK.
“But this same person has been taught by the same lecturers and the same facilities as the HND holders and these HND holders move into the market with the same people who have passed through the same class and they are discriminated against.
“They are said to be lower in intellect and acumen and they had been in the same class with these people taught by the same lecturers and at a point in their career, they are stopped at Grade level 14 while their colleagues would go ahead of them, manning them.”
Asomugha indicted the government for not paying “proper attention” to the problem over the years, adding that industries suffering as students abandon polytechnics for degrees.
“The manpower to man these industries, the core technical experts to man industries is not there anymore. People would prefer to go and read Philosophy or Public Administration, instead of studying engineering in the polytechnics just because they would not like to have HND,” he said.
The B.Sc/HND dichotomy has been a major issue in the education sector for a long while.
Recently, the Rector of Hussaini Adamu Federal Polytechnic Kazaure, Dr. Kabiru Matazu, called for the removal of the dichotomy, not long after the Vice Chancellor of Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko, Ondo State, Professor Femi Mimiko, described the dichotomy as unnecessary.
Similarly, the National President of National Association of Polytechnic Students (NAPS) Com. Ogbonnaya Sunday, the existing dichotomy is the main problem of polytechnic students and graduates.

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