Stakeholders Harp On Importance Of Technical, Vocational Education Training In Nigeria - THE ENCOUNTER NEWS


Friday, August 13, 2021

Stakeholders Harp On Importance Of Technical, Vocational Education Training In Nigeria

ABEOKUTA-  Despite the abundance of natural and human resources in Nigeria, Nigeria was ranked 55th among the world's ranking of technological development. This was based on her high unemployment rate, low income per capital, crippling national debt and inflation rates.

These are the submission of educationists at the 1st Raheem Adisa Oloyo Annual public lecture, organized by Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, Ogun State.

Speaking on the topic: " Repositioning Technical and Vocational Education (TVET) Towards Addressing Technological Challenges of the Nation in the 21st Century,"  the immediate past Executive Secretary, National Board for Technical Education (NBTE), Dr. Masa'ud Kazaure emphasized on the importance of Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET).

Dr. Kazaure while delivering his lecture said that, Nigeria needs to put more effort to promote technological education to overcome unemployment and social exclusion.

"The current 21st Century focus is increasingly upon preparing knowledgeable and skilled workers to meet the challenges posed during the transition from Industrial Age to Information Age.

"TVET of the 21st century should  therefore provide skilled workers with continuous enhanced skill levels to meet the needs of new industries and production patterns.

"It must help to overcome unemployment, social exclusion that will cope with the requirements of service sector. It must also deal with problems of our transition economy, poverty, insurgency, banditry, migration etc." he said.

According to him, as Nigeria aspires to become a major player in the world economy in the 21st century, it is very clear that the most crucial vehicle for attaining such ambitious goal, apart from power infrastructure, is skilled and competent worker.

He, however, attributed poor funding, inadequate infrastructure, materials, and staffing, laboratory and workshops facilities, coupled with inadequate opportunity for work based experience as part of challenges facing TVET in Nigeria.

"The status of TVET is often quite low in many countries. It is a global challenge both in advanced and developing economies, in spite of the growing shortage of skilled workers to meet the requirements of enterprises and to serve communities needs.

"This low status has negative impacts to young people's and their parents' interest and participation in TVET which poses serious concern, especially in an era of growing aspiration towards economic development" he said.

He stressed further that, in a study carried out by National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) revealed an aggregate fall in overall technical manpower supply from the Polytechnics despite the establishment of more technical institutions.

He, however, advocated for institutionalizing skills qualifications in Nigeria saying, "a harmonized system of skills evaluation and recognition will provide employers with the same standard of skills-sets against which occupational and job classifications can be benchmarked.

"Such an evaluation system will also promote up-skilling, re-skilling, multi-skilling, and lifelong learning".

He advised that; national skills and employment policy should be developed, funding regime for skills development should be identified, Nigeria Skills Qualification (NSQ) should be included in scheme of service.

He also solicited that all Polytechnics should be given degree awarding status (B. Tech), barriers on the graduates should be removed so that they can aspire to highest positions in the civil service.

He concluded that, this would transform Polytechnic education in the country.

In the same vein, the Chairman Governing Council, the Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, Dr. Veronica Ogbuagu said that, most Polytechnics, Federal, State or Privately owned are faced with challenges particularly in the area of inadequate funding, as a result of which, many have found it increasingly difficult to meet their pressing and demanding financial obligations needed for infrastructural development, security challenges, intra-campus roads amongst others.

Similarly, she solicited for government's assistance to help remove the constraints and facilitate rapid technological development in Nigeria.

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