The Kogi Government on Tuesday solicited for adequate support from the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) to enable it to provide quality technical and vocational education for the people.
Mrs Rosemary Osikoya, the state’s Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, made the call when a team from the NBTE, Kaduna, led by Mr Samaila Tanko, visited her on Tuesday in Lokoja.
The NBTE is a board of education which supervises, regulates and oversee educational programmes offered by technical institutions at Secondary, Polytechnic and Monotechnic levels through an accreditation process.
Osikoya said the state needed support from the board in terms of technical, advisory and accreditation of programmes in its technical colleges which their accreditation expired since 2002.
The commissioner stressed the dire need to focus more attention on vocational and technical education as a way of curbing the menace of the high number of out-of-school children in the state.
“The state government has reclassified 17 other schools to be upgraded to technical colleges in addition to the existing four, to enable each local government area to have one technical college.
“The support of the NBTE will be highly needed in that direction especially in the area of accreditation and other technical assistance.’’
Osikoya thanked the Federal Government for giving approval for the establishment of a federal technical college in Kogi, saying it was the first of its kind.
She added that a team from the Federal Ministry of Education, earlier this month, visited the proposed site for Federal Government Technical College, Ogugu, Olamaboro Local Government Area, for assessment.
She said that hitherto, Kogi was abandoned for decades with no external support from both the federal government and development partners, adding that the efforts of Gov. Yahaya Bello’s administration in education were yielding tangible results.
The commissioner commended the governor for making the education sector the topmost priority of his administration.
She also lauded the governor for his political will and commitment which she said had brought great transformation to the education sector in Kogi.
“We are happy that NBTE team is here in Kogi for inspection and collaboration; we are excited and we would like to make the best of it,” she said.
The commissioner, on behalf of the governor, assured the team of their safety in Kogi.
Earlier, the NBTE team leader, Mr Samaila Tanko, said the visit was an advisory and resource inspection.
He said the team would go round the four technical colleges in Kogi whose all programmes’ accreditation had expired since 2002.
According to him, for those programmes to be run again, the board needs to access the level of facilities available in the colleges.
Tanko assured the commissioner of the team’s total support whenever the board’s attention was called to any area of support within its capacity.