#FactChecker: Is Yabatech Now A University?

#FactChecker: Is Yabatech Now A University?

Yaba College of Technology, the first tertiary institution established in Nigeria, has in recent times, been speculated to be ripe for metamorphosis into a proposed Federal University of Technology, Yaba, but there seem to already be celebrations for what appears to be a premature victory.

On Wednesday, Senator Solomon Adeola, representing Lagos West in the red chamber, tweeted that the bill he sponsored to upgrade the polytechnic, was read for the third time and passed by the senate, leading to mixed reactions.

His tweet:

The third reading success of the bill means it still has to scale three hurdles before it becomes law according to Law padi.

According to the platform, a clean copy of the bill will have to be signed by the House clerk before both upper and lower Chambers adopt it.

After this seal of legislative approval is made, the president will receive it to either sign or veto, however, a veto will be immaterial if 2/3 of the legislature approve.

– Timeline of events –

While it is difficult to arrive at when the idea was conceived, reading of the bill at the senate is an easier feat.

– On November 16th, 2016, the bill, sponsored by Senator Gbenga Ashafa, was first read in the red chamber.

Gbenga Ashafa

In his lead debate, Mr Ashafa argued that Nigeria’s march towards providing education for all in the shortest possible time informed his introduction of the bill.

He said the new university will encourage the advancement of’ learning among other benefits.

The institution will “Provide courses of instruction and other facilities for the pursuit of learning in all its branches, and to make those facilities available on proper terms to such persons as are equipped to benefit from them;

“Encourage and promote scholarship and conduct research in all fields of learning with an emphasis on technical education;

“Relate its activities to the social, cultural and economic needs of the people of Nigeria; and undertake any other activities appropriate for a university of the highest standards,” he stated.

– The second reading of the bill occurred on March 2, 2020.

Solomon Adeola

Leading the debate for the bill, Senator Adeola said that the bill which was presented in the last Senate, was not passed, seeks to upgrade the oldest tertiary institution in Nigeria established in 1947 during the colonial era into a university of technology, adding that the upgrade will stimulate our economy’s need for requisite technical, scientific and technological skills for its effective operation.

Adeola said that the upgrade will address the huge demand for technology oriented tertiary education that the mega city of Lagos requires to function optimally in the interest of Nigeria adding that this upgrade is different from creating a New University from the scratch as is currently  being done for most new Universities.

Although, the Rector of the institution, Engr. Obafemi Omokungbe, has expressed preparedness of the college to undertake the burden of restructuring to accommodate the change, it isn’t quite there yet.

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