An expert in Oil and Gas Technology, Dr. Victor Williams Tuesday lamented that the numerous opportunities existing in the oil and gas sector are being dominated by foreign engineers after over forty years of oil exploration in the country.
Williams, who is the Rector of Ibom Metropolitan Polytechnic, an affiliate of City and Guilds of London Institute, Uyo, Akwa Ibom state, said the quality of Petrochemical Engineering graduates from Nigerian Universities are not technologically equipped to man technical aspects in the industry.
According to him, most Nigerian petrochemical engineers only parade academic certificates without engineering skills.
Williams said “I am sad that our people did not get a fair share of employment in the oil industry. I later saw for myself when I was in the system that we cannot do most of the things the foreigners are doing, not even wielding and fabrication.
“At a time we had youth restiveness and all manners of agitations in the Niger Delta region over unemployment by the oil companies but unfortunately none of the agitators are skilled enough to handle sensitive technical aspects in oil and gas sector.
“Thank God for the former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Victor Attah who spearheaded the campaign for resource control which eventually addressed to appreciable extent restiveness in the region.
“We have professors in the oil and gas as engineers. What is wrong is that they don’t have skills relevant in the industry. They are not engaged in sensitive and critical aspects of the sector, apart from writing proposals, documentaries and organising educational workshops. They are never involved in the technical section.
“It is based on the revelations that I got when I had the contract job with Shell Petroleum that I decided to bridge the gap with the establishment of a technical institution, “City and Guilds of London Institute”, to prepare professional with needed skills to met employment requirement for the oil sector.
“Right now Akwa Ibom State produces the highest number of skilled professionals in the industry.”