Nigerians reject scrapping of HND certificate, merger of polytechnics

By Joshua Olalekan, Lagos
Nigerians have rejected the decision of the Federal Government to merge polytechnics with universities in the country.

In an online poll conducted by BLACKFACE over the weekend, respondents also rejected the decision of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) in scrapping the award of the Higher National Diploma (HND) by polytechnics in the country.

The Minister of Education, Dr. Adamu Adamu had recently disclosed that this move is part of the comprehensive reform of the tertiary education sector by the present administration, and that it was aimed at removing the dichotomy that exists between holders of Higher National Diploma (HND) and bachelor’s degree holders.
According to the minister, polytechnics will now become campuses of the proximate universities with the Vice Chancellors of those universities appointing provosts for the polytechnics, subject to the ratification of the Universities’ Councils.
The minister also added that with this new arrangement, polytechnics would only award the National Diploma (ND), while students interested in furthering their education will be awarded the Bachelor of Technology (B. Tech) by the proximate university.
Adamu stated that the two top polytechnics, Yaba College of Technology and Kaduna Polytechnic will now be named City University of Technology, Yaba and City University of Technology, Kaduna respectively.
Reacting to the move, Nigerians who voted on our online platform rejected the move with 42 per cent of those polled opposing it while 36 per cent voted to approve it. Twenty-two per cent of those who responded remained indifferent.
In all, a total of 1,539 people voted in a three-day poll conducted by BLACKFACE MEDIA that took place between 25th and 27th of July on our Twitter handle @BlackfaceNews.
Those who support the move are of the opinion that the move will no doubt bridge the dichotomy that exists between the holders of the two certificates.
One of such is Edward Ahamba, who wrote, “What’s the need having a cert that is acceptable by some employers and rejected by many? I have both. I know the difference.”
Ahamba’s view is shared by another respondent, Ose Ogbeide, who simply retorted, “Why not? It’s okay.”
One of those who opposed the move, Michael Ojegbaro wrote, “Polytechnics should produce hands on technical/vocational graduates.  Today they would easily have been self-employed. We need practical people and not pen pushers. Properly trained, professional workmen like our neighboring countries.”
To Godwin Kayode, “it is absolute nonsense. They serve different purposes,” while Romson CFC stated that “Polytechnics were set up to serve its own purpose, which is totally different from the University.”
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