The Federal Government recently directed that the award of the Higher National Diploma (HND) by the nation’s polytechnics be abolished.
It equally stated that the polytechnics will 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.
If this is implemented now, it means that the award of HND will only be limited to only the students currently admitted for the programmes. Subsequently, polytechnics will be limited to the award of National Diploma (ND) and any student who wish to further his or her studies after obtaining ND award will have to pursue the award of Bachelor of Technology (B. Tech) through the proximate university.
This directive by the FG has however attracted mixed reactions.
While some are in support of this development going by the fact it will help resolve the HND-B.Sc discrimination, some lecturers and stake holders are of the opinion that this move will result in the mass sack of polytechnic lecturers as many of them may not have the qualifications to fit into the new system and many not be able to improve their qualifications immediately due to constraints of time, age , finance and even unfavourable structures.
According to the Acting Head, Mass Communication Department, UNILAG, Dr. Oluruntola Sunday, the move by Federal Ministry of Education will not augur well as certain machineries ought to have been put in place before declaring the outright scrapping of HND by polytechnics.
Another senior lecturer, Dr. Tayo Poopola lamented that the constant change of policies without getting people’s opinions has been the bane in the education sector.
” Nigeria, who operate a democratic rule, ought to set agenda for public discussion before declaring a new policy. ” He stated.