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FG spends over N400 million on training engineers


Peter Esele

Peter Esele

As part of plans to increase the capacity of Nigerian engineering graduates for the power industry, especially in the areas of electricity generation, distribution and transmission nationwide, the Federal Government has spent a total of N441,600,000 million for training of 184 graduates in nine months.

Former Labour union leader, Peter Esele and Convener of Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) Technical Vocational Education and Project(TVET) stated this in Abuja at the third graduation ceremony of National Power Training Institute of Nigeria(NAPTIN).

Esele stressed that the training programme funded by the Federal Government through sponsorship from SURE-P TVET 2014-2015 session, was aimed at deepening the hands-on experience of engineering graduates who he said require such technical exposures to drive the huge power generation, transmission, and distribution needs of the country to significantly improve power supply.

He said although the SURE-P 2014-2015 was already fully paid for by government, through the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the agency does not deal directly with NAPTIN in ensuring payment of the N2.4million encompassing training, housing costs and pocket allowance for every successful participant.

He restated the commitment of government to continually provide financial and logistical supports required to produce success story from the scheme.
Speaking at the occasion, NAPTIN Director-General, Reuben Okeke stressed that the training of Nigerian engineering graduates was designed to create a critical mass of highly skilled, yet locally trained engineers who would help in scaling up the quantum of power generated and transmitted nationwide.

He noted that no fewer than 2,000 industry-ready graduate engineers have received training from 2012 till date, under the NAPTIN Graduate Skills Development Programme (NGSDP).
This intervention in addition to creating 5,000 beneficiaries across the power sector, he said had also vindicated proponents of the institute that local training of Nigerian engineers can be effective in tackling shortage of power headlong.

While saying that a special post graduate diploma course on engineering would soon take off in specified tertiary institutions, Reuben noted that of the total of184 graduating trainees, only 182 would be certified.

These he said comprise of 126 Electrical/ Electronic Engineers,and 56 Mechanical Engineers.
Head of Service of the nation, Danladi Kifasi said that the training of Nigerian engineering graduates locally was a deliberate plan by government to produce competent hands, using engineers with vast academic competence.

He pointed out that at the rate at which the institute was producing skillful engineers, the nation would soon start exporting her skilled personnel to neighbouring countries to support power challenges in the continent.

Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, who was represented at the event by Minister of State for Power, Mohammed Wakili, stressed the need for continuity and consistency on quality of graduates.

The graduating students are professionally distributed into generation section,63, Transmission,59, while distribution had 60 participants.

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