Members of Government Technical College, Ado-Ekiti Old Students Association in Ekiti State have called on the Federal Government to spend the chunk of the Subsidy Re-investment Programme (SURE-P) fund on the development of technical education in the country.
The Coordinator of the Association, Elder Rotimi Oguntoye, who made the statement at the weekend, during his inaugural meeting, said the country would continue to feel the negative impact of the neglect of technical education unless attention is directed at the sector.
While lamenting the neglect of the sector for a very long time, Oguntoye said he believed that the amount being realised by Dr. Christopher Kolade-led SURE-P committee was enough to turn around the fortunes of the sector if expended on it judiciously.
According to him, the Federal Government's vision 2020 would continue to be a mirage, except the technical sector was revitalised and made the economic hub of the nation.
He urged the government to spend the fund directly on Technical Colleges, who would in turn train the students for self-dependence and shills acquisition, rather than to train the Artisans.
The coordinator advised that the Fund being generated from the SURE-P should not be expended on political patronage or on any other frivolous mission.
He said training of unemployed youths in skills acquisition programmes by governments, had failed to yield useful results because the trainees were only concerned about the money the government would disburse after the training.
"Go to all the towns in Nigeria and check whether those who were trained by governments are establishing anything. What they do is to collect the money and used it to purchase a new motorbike for Okada business," he said.
Also, the Director, Planning Research and Statistics of the state Board for Technical Education, Mr. Adebayo Ademola, said Nigeria would be better off, if government at all levels pursue the philosophy behind technical education in Nigeria.
Ademola revealed that some of the Technical Colleges across the country only existed in names, stressing that they had been made inefficient and stifled by poor funding.