By Saheed Ibrahim
Polytechnic lecturers, under the aegis of the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), have urged President Muhammadu Buhari to sign into law the bill designed to end the disparity between the holders of first degree (BSc) and Higher National Diploma (HND) certificates in the country before leaving office on May 29.
The Nigerian Senate passed the bill to abolish the discrimination between holders of Higher National Diploma (HND) and Bachelor of Science (BSc) from tertiary institutions about two years ago.
Speaking on the delay of consent to the bill, ASUP National President, Dr. Anderson Ezeibe said President Buhari must not leave the office without signing the bill into law, saying such would be counterproductive and a monumental waste of public resources and time.
According to him, “it invariably meant that the document would be thrown into the dustbin and except the next National Assembly members would be interested, they will consider it for a fresh debate and then passage to the next president.
Ezeibe said he could not also understand why the National Assembly members, on their part, kept silent over the bill they had already passed to the president.
The ASUP head emphasised that ending the disparity between the two educational qualifications is long overdue and would certainly boost polytechnic enrolment.
He said the disparity had greatly damaged the country’s polytechnic education as many brilliant technical students, who would have naturally enrolled to acquire high technical skills and knowledge, are running away from seeking admission into polytechnics.
“And this development would continue to affect Nigeria’s education and economic negatively if not addressed and reversed,” he stated.
Ezeibe urged President Buhari to ensure he makes history by signing the bill into law and officially ending all forms of discrimination in connection with the long-existing dichotomy between the holders of both academic certificates, particularly at workplaces.
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