Rectors Debate Proposal To Replace HND With Bachelor Of Technology

A strong indication has emerged that rectors and provosts from polytechnics and other Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions across Nigeria will convene on Tuesday, to discuss a significant proposal: replacing the Higher National Diploma (HND) programme with a Bachelor of Technology (B.Tech) degree. 

PLATFORM TIMES reports that the  proposal aims to address long-standing issues of discrimination and inequality faced by polytechnic graduates in the Nigerian workforce.

It was further gathered that the  meeting, organized by the National Board of Technical Education (NBTE), comes in response to a letter signed by Lawal Hafiz, the Director of Human Resources at NBTE. 

Addressed to all rectors and provosts nationwide, the letter emphasizes the need to tackle the persistent problem of HND certificate holders being treated less favorably compared to their counterparts with university degrees.

The dialogue will not only focus on the potential transition from HND to B.Tech but also renew calls for the federal government to approve a pivotal bill. 

This legislation, sponsored by Senator Ayo Akinyelure, seeks to eliminate the dichotomy between bachelor’s degree holders and HND holders in employment and promotion processes. 

The bill, which has successfully passed its third reading in the Senate, aims to end the discrimination that has long plagued polytechnic graduates, limiting their career advancement and professional recognition.

“I write to invite you to a one-day national dialogue on the future of the Higher National Diploma programme in the Nigerian Educational Landscape,” Hafiz stated in the letter. 

“The objective of the dialogue is to look at issues surrounding the continued discrimination of the holders of the Higher National Diploma certificates and fashion out ways of addressing the age-long problem.”

The NBTE says it  hopes that the national dialogue will provide a comprehensive platform for stakeholders to deliberate on the benefits and potential challenges of replacing the HND with a B.Tech degree. 

Additionally, the meeting is seen as an opportunity to galvanize support for the bill awaiting presidential assent, formally titled “An Act to Abolish and Prohibit Dichotomy and Discrimination between First Degree and Higher National Diploma in the Same Profession/Field for the Purpose of Employment and for Related Matters.”

This legislative push, if successful, would mark a significant shift in the Nigerian educational and professional landscape, ensuring that polytechnic graduates receive equal recognition and opportunities as their university-educated peers.

 The outcome of today’s discussions could pave the way for substantial reforms, impacting the future of technical and vocational education in Nigeria.

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