By NBF News
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The National Centre for Technology Management (NACETEM) and stakeholders in vocational education have called for the establishment of a National Commission for Vocational Education (NCVE). The call for the establishment of a commission for vocational education and the revamping of technical and vocational institutions by the stakeholders and NACETEM emanated from a national workshop held in Minna, Niger State.

Among the moderators at the two-day workshop were the Director-General/CEO of NACETEM, Dr. Willie O. Siyanbola, Dr. Benjamin Ogwo, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Professor Kazeem Adebayo Salami, Federal University of Technology, Minna, while four papers were delivered by experts on vocational and technical education.

After the event, the communiqué signed by Mr. Yusuf Mohammed, Director, NACETEM, South West Office said the commission, if established would regulate skills training and supervise the Vocational Enterprise Institutions (VEIs) and Innovation Enterprise Institutions (IEIs).

The participants also demanded for re-introduction of craft/vocational studies in primary schools' curricular nationwide and the expansion of existing technical and vocational institutions and workshops with a view to making them functional and productive.

They also advocated for a continuous curriculum development process in TVET to accommodate Information Technology (IT) and re-training exercises to boost their knowledge base on contemporary and traditional technologies.

The workshop recommended that a proposal be packaged to accommodate IT firms, banks, philanthropists, entrepreneurs, and telecommunication companies for sponsorship while it appealed for the provision of computer sets and Internet facilities to TVET institutions, teachers and students by government and intervention agencies, at subsidized rates.

Other recommendations include the provision of adequate funds to implement programmes/projects and acquire relevant machinery/apparatus for training, stressing that the role of the private sector in this area could not be overemphasized.

The participants agreed that power is critical to the sustenance of industrialization thus they demanded that adequate source of power supply be made available in every institution and has to be maximally maintained.

'The exhibition of products manufactured by TVET trainees and graduates at all NACETEM workshops and states' trade fairs should be encouraged,' the participants added.

The communiqué stated that the participants observed some challenges inhibiting technological and industrial development in the country such as non-applicability of entrepreneurship training, which continually undermines the targets of the industry.

They also noted inadequate infrastructural facilities, laboratories, and workshop equipment and corresponding human capacity in various institutions, especially polytechnics and poor funding which affects provisions for instructional materials, staffing, and programme maintenance.

The participants decried the low enrolment into technical colleges as well as vocational institutes and uninteresting enrolment rate of females, and inadequate vocational skills available for learning.

Other observations by the stakeholders are that epileptic power supply is one of the key limiting factors to TVET development in the country and low-key utilization of information technology (IT) in TVET thus negates modern e-techniques in technology development.