On Wednesday, the acting Rector of the Federal Polytechnic, Offa, Dr. (Mrs) Ayodele Olaosebikan, described the polytechnic education subsector as an untapped goldmine that could sufficiently bail Nigeria out of the current economic recession.
Olaosebikan, who made this observation at the opening of a two-day workshop on ‘Strategic planning for the polytechnic,’ held in Ilorin, Kwara state, said if institutions in the sector were able to live up to their establishing mandate they have what it takes to produce the core of professionals that would be useful in jump-starting the national economy.
“The government needs to recognise that the polytechnic is a goldmine for the nation and if government invests adequately in the sector, it will bring about a turnaround for the economy of the nation,” she said.
According to the OffaPoly boss, there would be no need for government to import some categories of expatriates into the country to do some jobs that could be done more perfectly by Nigerians who have been trained in the polytechnic sector.
Although she acknowledged the challenge of poor funding and would want the federal government to improve in that aspect, Olaosebikan said the polytechnic itself is not relaxing on seeking more ways of generating internal revenue as well as blocking loopholes in finances of the institution.
She described the Strategic Planning workshop as a veritable avenue to collate the opinions of internal and external stakeholders of the polytechnic on how to move the institution forward in order to achieve its mandate with greater efficiency and less cost.
According to her, attaining the required consolidation and moving forward powerfully for the envisaged academic transformation, require the participation and ownership of all the stakeholders in the Polytechnic.
She however promised that management will provide the required leadership to drive the plan as well as provide support in critical areas as may be required.
Her words: “I know we possess the required staff strength and quality to take the Polytechnic to greater heights. I know there will be challenges, especially challenge of funding. The essence of this strategic planning workshop is to find an effective way of utilising our current resources to get to where we should get. In the process, we may need to discard old systems and recreate new processes. The ultimate goal is to succeed in repositioning our institution.”
In his goodwill message at the event, the Executive Secretary, National Board for Technical Education (NBTE), Dr. Masudu Kazaure who was represented by the Deputy ZDirector (Research and Statistics) Mr. Anu Adeniran lamented that the scenarios in various polytechnics with poor and dilapidated infrastructure underline the shortcomings associated with unplanned development and project the importance of strategic planning in the management and delivery of technical and vocational education in the country.
However, according to him, such scenarios should be in the past as with the current administration’s emphasis on prudent and efficient management of public resources, there is no better time for institutions to embark on strategic planning than now.
“In the face of dwindling revenue resources, there is no more room for uncoordinated disbursement of physical and financial resources,” he said.
Okegbemi Olusoji Festus is an Editor/Creative writer at campustori.com, A digital media Executive and a known Social Media Enthusiast.