The Woes of Technical Education in Nigeria – by Gafar Titilope @titigafar
The Government’s tale story of technical education as a recipe for the creation of jobs for the youth of this country is a good idea, but this they only say on d pages of news paper which lack sincerity. I asked some question:
1. How many technical schools do we have in Nigeria?
In Ogun State, we have just five. For are owned by the state government and one is owned by the Federal Government. Ogun State has a population of over 3 million, obviously the few ones we have are far not enough for what we really need.
2. Was technical education even structured in our educational policy?
I think NO! From time, technical education was never structured in our education policy. Right from the time of Prof. Babs Fafunwa, as the Minister for Education, with his 188.8.131.52 education policy and even the new 9.3.4, being followed now, none reflects the importance of technical education, when the government knows that it is the only panacea to the problem of unemployment.
3. Are the technical schools well funded?
During one of my resent visit to the technical college in Ijebu-Ode, almost all machines, equipment and infrastructures are in devastating state. 75% of all machines are not working. They all stand there as symbols of decoration. Little or no fund is being given out to run these schools and all activities in their laboratory seem to be in a state of comatose. This results to theoretical knowledge, no practical experience, poor training, and poor products.
4. How many technical schools have been established in the country in the last 20 years?
NONE! None by the Federal Government, State Governments and private institutions. The churches now are in the habit of establishing universities, whose bill cannot be afforded by larger percentage of their church members. They establish the schools with the motive of making profit which is the opposite reason why the missionaries, who brought in religion into the country and also brought in western education. Education then was seen as service, rendered at no cost, meant to empower everyone, both the rich and the poor. Religious and private institutions are supposed to come to the rescue of government in establishing technical schools, but it’s never so.
The students of these schools do go out for industrial attachments, but they hardly get places of placement which will help them improve the skills learnt in school. Many of them are always rejected and the few ones that are absorbed are made to face hard labour at work without pay. Even some places where they are supposed to be absorbed, they have many expatriates, also products of technical schools from other countries, doing the same job and being paid good money as salaries and allowances.
Quota system, for the employment, for foreign companies in our labour law seems not to be effective anymore. Foreign companies employ people from their countries to take up jobs that can be done by Nigerians. Times without number calls have been made to the Labour Minister on this but it all fell on deaf ears.
After all these, the products of the technical schools, roam the street, still unemployed, no job, no startup capital, and the problem of unemployment persists.
– Gafar Titilope
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