ASUP Rejects Reconstituted Governing Councils

20th May 2024

Like its counterparts in universities, the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics has rejected the newly reconstituted governing councils of Federal Government-owned polytechnics.

In a statement signed by ASUP’s President, Shammah Kpanja, the union expressed “dismay” at the new list of appointees whom it tagged as individuals with “no knowledge” of the polytechnic system.

Kpanja said: “Having carefully studied the released list of new members, we want to express our dissatisfaction and disappointment with the composition for the Polytechnics.

“Our Union has been demanding that persons with the requisite knowledge of the workings of the sector be appointed. Such persons in the category of former Rectors and other Principal Officers from the sector, former chief executives and staff of the regulatory body, retired and serving Chief Lecturers, and other staff from the sector who have displayed adequate knowledge of the workings of the sector abound in sufficient numbers.

“The current composition falls significantly short of the above as no such person(s) in the categories listed was appointed. This is a great disservice to the Polytechnics and is also different from the experience in the two other sub-sectors that make up the tertiary education sector.

“The union noted that it was a witness to the fact that former executive secretaries of regulatory bodies were appointed in the other sub-sectors, but none was curiously found appointable for the Polytechnics.”

“Former Principal Officers and retired and serving staff were appointed but none was found appointable for the Polytechnics despite the retinue of former Rectors, Chief Lecturers and other Principal Officers prevalent in Nigeria’s Polytechnic System.

“Our Union views this unwholesome trend as an extension of the age-long discrimination against Polytechnics in the country and an attempt to push the sector into crisis. The list for Polytechnics as released cannot improve the lot of the Polytechnics but rather turn them to playgrounds for businessmen”, he further said.

ASUP, however, demanded that the list for the Polytechnics be “reviewed before the inauguration to include the class of persons with requisite knowledge of the workings of Polytechnics.”

It noted that a review of the list would save the sector from a “crisis associated with poor governance which is likely to prevail if the list is not reviewed accordingly.”

11 months after the administration of President Bola Tinubu dissolved the governing councils of FG-owned universities, polytechnics and colleges of education, it unveiled a list of newly appointed members of councils.

The list, which was unveiled on Saturday, was signed by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education, Didi Walson-Jack.

Credit: The Punch