The Federal Government has restated its commitment to encouraging Technical and Vocational Education in order to improve skilled manpower to operate the nation’s economic activities for rapid development.
The Minister of Education, Prof. Ruqayyatu Rufa’i, stated this at the 15th Joint Convocation Ceremony of Federal College of Education (Technical), Umunze in Anambra on Friday.
“The aspiration of Federal Government is to see better funded, as well as equipped and motivated staff and students in our institutions.
“The ministry has taken a bold step to confront challenges facing our education system headlong.
“Two major focal areas of the plan are Teacher Education and Development, Technical and Vocational Education and Training,’’ she said.
Rufa’i explained that in spite of government’s effort to improve the sector, there was a shortage of technical and vocational teachers in the nation’s educational institutions.
“It is however, sad to note that while many technical teachers are produced from our various institutions yearly, there is still the dearth of this calibre of teachers in our classrooms nation-wide.
“It has been painfully noted that many qualified teachers upon graduation opt to remain unemployed rather than practise their profession.
“With this development, government policy of popularising science and technical studies in schools has suffered a setback,” the minister said.
She advised the graduating students to justify their training by opting to practise their profession with zeal for the benefit of the country.
In his remark, Gov. Peter Obi of Anambra who was? represented by his deputy, Mr Emeka Sibeudu, pledged the commitment of his administration to the growth of the college.
“Even though it is a Federal Government institution, we assure you of a total commitment of the Anambra government in ensuring relative stability and welfare support to the college,” Obi said.
Earlier, the Provost of the college, Prof. Joseph Ogbuagu, urged the 2,855 graduating students of the college to be good ambassadors.
The provost said that the institution is facing many challenges like access roads, ecological, water and electricity problems.
He appealed to the federal government and spirited individuals to assist the college.
Some of those who attended the occasion were a former governor of Anambra, Mrs Virgy Etiaba, and member representing Orumba North and South Federal Constituency, Mr Ben Nwankwo.