Former minister decries deplorable state of technical schools

Chinwe Obaji

A former Minister of Education, Prof. Chinwe Obaji, has deplored the infrastructural conditions of Federal Government owned technical colleges, saying it portrays unserious attitude to the country’s quest for technological development.

Speaking at the send off ceremony of the erstwhile Principal of Federal Science and Technical College (FSTC) Yaba, Lagos, Rev. Chris Ugorji, the former minister said the technical laboratories and workshops in those colleges are in a sorry state.

She said for a government that wants to join the global technology league table, learning facilities in it’s technical schools should be regularly updated.

“What is the condition of FG technical schools? Do they have new technical laboratories? What are those schools producing? Achieving technological advancement is not just playing to the gallery; it is about showing commitment and matching words with reality.

Look at FSTC, Yaba, it is the premier technical school, and will soon clock 70 years, by now we should be producing something even if it is simple cell phone. Simple technology we cannot produce. Go to FSTC, Orozo and FSTC, Ohanso, the state of their facilities is terrible.”

Also, former Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education (FME), Dr. MacJohn Nwaobiala blamed the situation and other challenges confronting the sector on lack of visionary leadership.

He tasked the government to ensure that people with the right competence are allowed to handle education matters so as to guarantee the needed change.

Commending Ugorji who is retiring after 35 years of meritorious service in the ministry, he urged the leaders in the FME to carefully search for his replacement so that his transformation agenda will not be thwarted.

He said, “In Nigeria today, square pegs” are often put in “round holes” and this development does not yield expected results. I urge the FG to carefully choose the person that will replace Ugorji as the principal of the school so as to sustain the developmental projects and vision of his predecessor.”

Ugorji, in his response revealed that on assumption of duty as the principal of the college in August 2014, he met the college in a deplorable condition.

“In spite of efforts of previous administrations, FSTC Yaba was still predominantly known for students’ truancy, dirty environment, poor infrastructure and poor dressing, to mention but a few. But today, “FSTC Yaba is at a pedestal that if driven upon the wheels of continuation in good governance/administration, no other science and technical college (federal or state) will be able to compete and overtake our students.



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