Leadership tussle rages in Federal Poly, Nassarawa

The serene academic atmosphere in the Federal Polytechnic, Nasarawa was thrown into confusion recently over who between Dr. Shettima Abdulkadir Saidu and Mr Shuaibu Madaki is the substantive rector of the institution. KATE ONWUDINJO captured the true situation on ground as well as government’s reaction

The confusion at the Federal Polytechnic, Nassarawa had started when on February 3 this year, Mr Madaki appeared on the scene as the acting rector of the school, having been appointed in an acting capacity awaiting the appointment of a substantive rector.

The situation however got worse when Dr.Shettima Abdulkadir  said attempted resuming duty as the substantive rector, brandishing his  appointment letter, but was refused entry by Mr Madaki who argued that the appointment was not made public and therefore not recognised.

Blueprint visited the school and met a confused student pollution who had been gripped with the fear of a possible outbreak of violence, considering that the two opposing sides may decide to confront each other.
Dr. Saidu, it was argued, was said to have served twice as Provost, Federal College of Education, Potiskun, in Yobe state, a development that makes him ineligible for any fresh appointment.

When confronted with the raging crises at the Polytechnic, the Director, Tertiary Education at the Federal Ministry of Education, Hajiya Hindatu Abdullahi, acknowledged that she signed the letter of appointment for Dr. Shettima, whose appointment according to her followed due process and is recognised as the substantive rector of the school
“The letter I signed for the position of Rector, Federal Polytechnic Nasarawa bears the name of Dr Shettima Abdulkadir Saidu. Any other claim on the contrary is that of an impostor’’ she maintained.

The director further argued that the appointment of the substantive rector followed due process, as the council of the school had nominated three candidates which were forwarded to the president out of which one candidate was chosen. “the person in an acting capacity and the substantive occupier of the office who is more superior’’, she asked rhetorically
The new rector takes over from Dr Pius Otaru Salami, as his appointment puts to rest the intense lobbying of the Presidency and anxiety within the institution over who would become the next rector of the polytechnic.

Public Relations Officer of the Polytechnic, Tonia Ohieku, in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja, indicated that Abdulkadir Saidu’s appointment took effect from January 31 for a first tenure of four years.
The appointment came at a time academic activities in polytechnics across the country have been grounded by the ongoing strike by the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP).
The new rector, in his speech, thanked President Goodluck Jonathan for the appointment and promised to work diligently for the growth of the institution.

He said: “Let me reassure you that my coming here today is with enthusiasm, open mindedness and great determination to work and be part of this great family.”
He called for maximum cooperation from the management and staff of the institution in order to work as a team in achieving the needed transformation of the polytechnic.

The new rector expressed happiness over the vision and mission statement of the institution, warning that his administration would not condone lukewarm attitude to work while hard work and dedication to duty would be rewarded.
Under the leadership of its former rector, Dr. Otaru Salami led management team; the school had ensured a cult free institution through the establishment of effective management system that ensures discipline, hard work and dedication to study by students in the institution.

The school is said to maintain close tab on all its students, making it easy for any truant and deviant students in the institution to be fished out and disciplined. Since the students know the fate that await them in the event of truancy and related behaviors that breed cultism, those with bad character disposition have embraced good ones. To this end, the Polytechnic is a peaceful environment for learning and incubation of leaders of tomorrow.

The upsurge in the number of enrollment in the school, may be   is anchored on three platforms including the high standard and quality of teaching in the school,  effective and result oriented recruitment exercise that guarantees the employment of competent and qualified lectures in each and every department in the institution and the fact that parents could heave a sigh of relief that their wards will not die while in school as a result of cultism because the menace is nonexistent in the institution.

Many departments in the institution have been accredited by the National Board for Technical Education [NBTE]. This has also gone a long way elevating the quality of the school programmes as well as the acceptability of the institution’s certificate in Nigeria. The accreditation has affected positively the number of enrollment in the school.

Another finding by Blueprint is the relationship between the lecturers and students which is said to be cordial and harmonious. The result is a good environment for learning devoid of rancor and bitterness. In the area of infrastructural development, the school ranks high. The structures include Administrative blocks, Home economics block, Art and Visual aid block, Staff offices, and Class Rooms.

The structures have also added to the beauty of the environment. Some of these projects were founded through internally generated revenue.   The institution also runs efficient library service with steady power supply as complement. The school also boasts of a good health center that provides healthcare facilities to the teaming population of students.

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