Transport Minister tasks NITT on self sustainability
The Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Jaji Sambo has charged Nigerian Institute of Transport Technology (NITT) Zaria, to translate its giant strides in research, training and transport infrastructure development into self-sustainance, instead of relying on government appropriations.
The Minister, who was accompanied by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr. Magdalene Ajani and other Management Staff made this known in Zaria, during his familiarisation tour of the Instutute.
He emphasised; “NITT has no business going cap in hand to the National Assembly every year looking for appropriation. From what I have seen, there is a lot of money, you’re not making here”.
The Minister, who was obviously very pleased with the level of development in the institute said: “There is no need for the agencies in the Transportation Sector to send their staff abroad for training, when we have such institution right here in Zaria. There is no need wasting the scarce resources in such training outside”.
More so, the Minister pointed out that despite the huge investments in transportation sector by the present administration in the last seven years, a lot still needs to be done, to advance the Sector to enable Nigeria overcome deficit in the sector.
While appreciating the contributions and achievements recorded by the Management of NITT in the area of training, research and huge investment on infrastructure, the Minister urged them to provide leading role that will put Nigeria’s Transport sector in its rightful place in the global space.
He urged NITT to upgrade its curriculum according to global best practice and affiliate with various research institutions, thereby increasing the knowledge base of its lecturers and beneficiaries. This, he said is necessary to place the Institute on a high pedestal and as a training hub in Nigeria, Africa and the World at large.
Also speaking, the Director General, NITT, Zaria, Dr. Bayero Salih-Farah, said: “the Institute is complementing the effort of the present administration in exiting petrol subsidy regime through provision of alternative energy source to the sector. The Institute is currently in talks with the National Gas Expansion Programme Committee to provide technical manpower that will engineer the process of converting all fossil fuel driven vehicles to use either Compressed National Gas (CNG), Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) or the Liquified Premium gas (LNG)”.
“The Institute is planning to champion the process of conversion and production of conversion kits in the very near future. The Institute has equipment and facilities to achieve this”.
The DG also informed that in a bid to bring the services of the institution closer to the people across the geopolitical zones, the Institute has established and equipped Outreach Learning Centres in Port Harcourt, Lagos, Gombe, Kano, Ebonyi, Abuja, Katsina and Ekiti with state-of-the-art training equipment, aimed at bringing its programmes and services to the door steps of existing and prospective clients”.
According to the DG, the courses, which are both short-term and long-term basis are run throughout the year, adding that the institution is currently training over 4,000 youths across the country in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.
The courses run by NITT leading to National Diploma (ND) include: Transport and Logistics Management, Auto Body Technology, Transport Safety Technology while Transport Technology and Management are for High National Diploma (HND) level with Certificate Courses in Automotive Mechatronics, Driver Simulation, Crane Operation, Auto Electrical, Vulcanizing/Wheel Balancing and Alignment, Auto Wielding and Fabrication, Forklift Operations, Highway Design and Maintenance, Environmental Health and Safety in Transport.
The challenges facing the institution to which the DG called on the Minister to intervene include: budgetary constraints and the need to strengthen its legal Instruments to enable it keep pace with the current realities in the industry and play leading role in driving research, training and technology innovation in the industry.
“In view of the enormous tasks before the Institute and in order to fully deliver our mandate to the Transport Sector and the Nigerian economy at large, we are appealing to the Honourable Minister to kindly assist the Institute with alternative and more reliable sources of funding”, Farah pleaded.
Places visited by the Minister and entourage were: the Painting Booth, Welding Workshop, Automotive Workshop, Driving Simulation Laboratory among others .
The highlight of the occasion was the commissioning of the the new Bursary Building and the Foundation Laying for new Directors’ Qurters by the Minister