THE Strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union Of Polytechnics, (ASUP) which has crippled academic activities in some federal and state polytechnics has prompted the federal Government to appealed to the leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) to call off its 11-month-old industrial action in the interest of the country.
The Supervising Minister of Education, Barrister Nyesom who made the appealed yesterday, assured that government is working assiduously to see that issues surrounding the strike are properly addressed.
He said this in Abuja at the presentation of the report of the technical committee set up by the Federal Government on the removal of ceiling on career progression of HND holders and dichotomy between HND holders and degrees holders.
The minister promised that the report would be forwarded to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation for immediate action.
His words: “Let me on behalf of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation for completing the assignment given to them. Of cause we all know that this assignment is very serious; it is not any easy one, but what is important is that you have come up with far reaching decisions that would help to address some of the challenges that have been identified in the polytechnic sector.
“It is for ASUP to know that government is willing to solve the entire problem, but ASUP should know that the interest of this nation is paramount to everybody and that government is doing a lot of sacrifices to meet up on its own demand. ASUP should also in the interest of the nation call off the strike.”
The committee called for the strengthening of the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) so that it can continue with the review of curricular of the polytechnic sector and bring it in line with global and industrial standard.
Presenting the report the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education, Mr. MacJohn Nwaobiala, who is also the chairman of the committee, explained that the committee identified the imperative for changes to be made in classification of HND holders in the Scheme of Service as a first step to opening the career ladder to enable them reach the maximum grade levels in the civil service.
He also underlined the need to maintain standards, by not creating two different B. Tech degrees, and therefore considered it more beneficial to synchronize the B. Tech Curriculum proposed by the NBTE, for the polytechnics with the B. Tech degree approved for the universities by NUC, to avoid further dichotomy.
Speaking to journalists shortly after the presentation of the report, the President of ASUP, Chibuzor Asumogha, disclosed that the presentation of the report was “a step forward” in calling off the strike.
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