Senate seeks upgrade of Fed poly Offa to degree-awarding institution
Senator representing Kwara South senatorial district, Senator Oyelola Ashiru, has presented a bill at the Senate plenary for an Act to amend the Federal Universities of Technology Act Cap F23 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 to establish Federal University of Technology, Offa.
The bill hoped to upgrade the Federal Polytechnic, Offa, Kwara state from a diploma awarding institution to a degree-awarding institution and for other related matters.
The lawmaker, while highlighting the background of the bill, stressed the acute shortage of available slots to Nigerian universities for students seeking to get a degree in different courses.
“According to JAMB, only a few percentages of candidates secure admission due to limited vacancies in Nigerian universities. This challenge is a call for establishing more universities to cater for the demand of the qualified applicants from this zone.
“The Federal Polytechnic Offa was established in 1992 during the administration of Ibrahim Babangida. Just like other polytechnics in the country, it offers Ordinary National Diploma (OND) and Higher National Diploma (HND) with records of thousands of graduated students excelling in their careers.
“The high academic standards and uninterrupted academic session of the school, has made it to be rated consistently as one of the best 10 polytechnics in Nigeria, which has earned the school both national and international recognition. With a population of 10,000 students, the school is ranked the best-affiliated institution in Nigeria by National University Commission (NUC). The school has been anchoring the IJMB programme since 2018 in collaboration with Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria,” he said.
The lawmaker also said that the NUC had approved the Federal Polytechnic, Offa to run degree programmes effective since 2018/2019 academic session in affiliation with the University of Technology Minna (FUTMINNA), adding that the school has also finalized the process of affiliation with the Federal University, Oye Ekiti (FUOYE) and the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, (LAUTECH) Ogbomoso.
“The school has many competent and capable lecturers to train students in the field of sciences and humanities courses. It presently has over 50 PhD holders as lecturers and in addition, more than 40 lecturers currently in the process of obtaining Doctorate degree in their various fields.
The Federal Polytechnic Offa has a landmass of 1,050 hectares of which 27 per cent is presently in use, with a good road network, with modern infrastructural facilities such as; Lecture theatres, well-equipped libraries, standard medical centre, entrepreneurship centre, hostel facilities that can accommodate more than 3000 students, adequate water supply and a very supportive host community.
The lawmaker, while urging the President of the Senate and his colleagues, to support his legislative bill, stated that the Federal Government of Nigeria will not incur additional cost in converting the Federal Polytechnic, Offa to Federal University of Technology, Offa.
Recall that the bill was read for the first time in the hallowed chamber on, Tuesday, April 27, 2021. The bill is read for the second time on Thursday and has been referred to the Senate Committee on Tertiary Institution and TETFUND.