The adage that says,you can rub Peter to pay Paul is actually going on in Nigeria now,with the disparity between graduates of higher national diploma and bachelor of science.
Going by this trend of events in the country that has placed Bcs holders above HND holders in terms of employment opportunities and promotion, in which higher national diploma holders cannot go beyond grade level 13, while BSC holers can raise up to grade level 17 before retirement from active service.
In terms of academic discipline,both the holders of the two certificates spent the same years in the school. But in the practical aspect,higher national diploma holders are ahead of the bachelor of science degree holders, this is so because in Polytechnics 70 percent of their work is practical because it is a technologically base institutions that is aimed at equipping her graduants with a technologically base knowledge that helps graduate to be self reliance even after graduating from the school.
In developed nations,higher national diploma and bachelor of science are employeed on the same grade level , holders of higher national diploma work in companies and industries as technicians , manufacturer’s and instructors, while bachelor of science work as managers , but are in the same level, even at times higher national diploma holders earn more money than bachelor of science holers.
But not in Nigeria where there are lots of disparities between them which the holders of bachelor of science are favoured over the higher national diploma holders.
To begin the journey of ending this disparities,the national assembly,both the house of representatives and Senate, passed a bill to ends the dichotomy between the two certificates. The bill which was sponsored by Senator Ayo Akinyelure,(PDP Ondo central) to resolve the controversy ,it also seeks to promote Nigeria technological advancement by encouraging many qualified students to pursue Polytechnics and technology base studies.
However, on June 2, 2021,the Nigerian senate passed the bill to abolish HND/BSC dichotomy.
The bill stipulate punitive measures against any form of disparities and discrimination against holders of HND, this means the two certificates are now at equally with each other.
With the passing of the bill by the national assembly, what is now left is the president’s assent which will ensure that the growth of Polytechnic education in the country.
I can recalled vividly there was a time I had a chart with a lecturer from University and he encouraged me by telling me HND students are more committed in terms of quality than BSC holders and I ask him why? And he pointed out some rationales that draw my attention that HND holders have more experience than BSC holders when it comes to practical aspects.
Furthermore in some advanced Countries they don’t care about the certificate you have, all what they are after is what you can offer as a graduate a classical example is Jailani Aliyu an automobile designer from General Motors company America and he is a Nigerian and he said “ I’ve been working in America for over a decades but nobody ever ask me of my certificate all what the care is what I can offer.” And jailani Aliyu is also a Polytechnic graduate.
I’ve seen some organisations that think the dichotomy between HND and BSC holders is not something worth because ample of them prefer people with HND certificate to work in their organisations than BSC holders just because of the experience being gain through practical in the Polytechnic.
It’s well known fact that Polytechnic in Nigeria are meant to provide their students best skill and experience in the practical aspects of a particular course of study notwithstanding the fact that they are really up to the task when it comes to practical aspects.
I wonder why Nigerian government can’t reshuffle it’s educational system in other to give people a chance to explore their potentials in a particular aspects of study be it BSC or HND let it be equal in terms of everything because to some extent people with HND certificate are more brilliant when it comes to practical aspects than BSC holders.
Therefore, Nigeria students are calling on our dear president and authorities in charge as a matter of urgency and before the ugly situation gets out of hand ,to take the bull by the horn by signing into law the bill to end the dichotomy between the higher national diploma holders and bachelor of science holders .
Dangana Henry Joseph and Muhammad Umar Shehu Writes from the Department of Mass Communication,Abubakar Tatari Ali Polytechnic Bauchi, Bauchi state. Dangana and Umar can be reach via firstname.lastname@example.org.Umarshehu887@gmail.com 08035794769