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Benue Govt. reveals plan to upgrade ATPoly for technical skills acquisition



The Benue State Government has unveiled plans to engage foreign-based professionals to provide practical skills in technology and Information Communication Technology (ICT) at the Akawe Torkula Polytechnic (ATPoly), Makurdi.

Dr Martins Agena, Rector of the Polytechnic, disclosed this in a statement in Lagos on Wednesday.

Agena said this was to equip the youths with requisite knowledge for international certifications in technical skills that would make them self-reliant.

He said the move was part of Gov. Hyacinth Alia’s administration’s deliberate steps to ensure the polytechnic met international standards.

According to him, it was also meant to deliberately expose Benue indigenes to skills that will make them productive and valuable to the society.

He said the management of the Polytechnic had finalised plans with foreign technical partners who are professionals with reputable institutions in the UK, Canada and U.S.

He noted that these partners were willing to serve as resource persons to lecture students on skills acquisition at the institution.

“There are non-governmental organisations and individuals out there who are willing to support innovative ideas. They are there to support science and technology, which is the core of technical education.

“Private individuals and friends alike are much more willing. We have met over and over, and they are willing to come to our aid.
“It may seem very difficult but will be simple by the time we embark on doing the right thing.

“We are engaging professionals who have the technical know-how, people whose knowledge have already been tested in the developed world like the United Kingdom. So, we have no doubt in doing what we are planning to do now.

“We are now in a global village where the boundaries are no longer there. The resource persons we are engaging don’t need to travel to Benue State or Makurdi for them to lecture our students.

“We are going to create classroom technology that is virtual for now, and in the end, we will hold our lectures conveniently and human resource will not be a problem at all,” he said.

Speaking on the challenges currently faced by the institution, Agena said polytechnic education was highly needed in the 21st century, because of its capacity to build skills.

He said he was not deterred because he had the backing of the governor, who, he said, was desperate and deliberate to improve the lives of Benue people, especially the youths.

“Of course, the difficulties are there but I have a governor who confided in me, who has confidence in me and who said he wants this place to turn things better for the society.

“For now, Gov. Alia is determined and deliberate about giving the citizens and indigenes of the state the technical skills that will make them self-reliant.

“He has been insistent, since I came on board, that I give him the necessary requirement for the polytechnic to be of global standard, so, the government is not taking it lightly. He is serious about that.

“The government has prioritised education in the state and that could be the first way of fighting insecurity.

“By the time you pack most of the youths off the streets and give them education, using the required skills to thrive in today’s world, they will have no time to indulge in some of these criminalities we have in our society,” the Rector added.

Taiye Olayemi

NEWSVERGE, published by The Verge Communications is an online community of international news portal and social advocates dedicated to bringing you commentaries, features, news reports from a Nigerian-African perspective. A unique organization, founded in the spirit of Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, comprising of ordinary people with an overriding commitment to seeking the truth and publishing it without fear or favour. The Verge Communications is fully registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as a corporate organization.



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