By Denis Demenenge

The Minister of Transportation, Chief Rotimi Amaechi, has advised that Zaria-based Nigeria Institute of Transport Technology (NITT) to work towards ensuring conversion of the institute to a full-pledged University of Transport and Logistics.

To achieve this, the Minister advised the management of the institute to set up a high powered committee to liaise with the National Universities Commission (NUC) which he assured that with Professor A. A. Rasheed there as Executive Secretary, and as a Kaduna State indigene, that is achievable.

He however advised that the institute can start by seeking accreditation first with the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) for the commencement of certain related diploma programmes, after which it can approach the NUC for conversion to a University.

The Minister who was in the institute recently on a facility tour and familiarization visit said he was amazed by the state-of-the-art facilities he saw in the institute which he said are grossly under utilized.

Chief Amaechi express optimism that with full support by the Federal Government and his Minister, NITT has what it takes to design and develop “made-in-Nigerian-cars.”

At the Biodiesel Laboratory, Amaechi also urged to the institute to expand the project aimed at producing Made-in-Nigeria vehicles, by establishing a feedstock farm for renewable energy.

He suggested to the NITT to factor into the 2021 budget the need for the acquisition of about “200 hectres of land” to start the project.

The Minister further suggested that in subsequent budgets, personnel and other logistics for effective operation of the feedstock farm should be captured.

This, according to him, can attract private investors to cue into the project.

Interacting with NITT N-Power automobile participants, the Minister admonished them to be disciplined in everything they do.

He assured them of the Federal government’s commitment toward the success of the N-Power scheme, stressing that “President Buhari’s administration is interested in lifting people out of poverty.”

“As potential entrepreneurs, you can create jobs through training a number of people in your workshop.
“I therefore enjoin you to utilise the skills acquired through the scheme, optimally, for personal gain as well as for the country at large.”

Speaking on behalf of the NITT N-Power participants, Mr Abdulazzez Owoseni-Salihu, commended the social investment programme of the present administration, especially the N-Power scheme.

Owoseni-Salihu notedthat the scheme had not only empowered the beneficiaries but also changed their mindsets toward self-sufficiency.

He appealed to the Federal government to “kindly“ provide N-Power graduates with “contemporary machines to enable them go into the field to practice the skills acquired.”

The Acting Director-General, NITT, Dr Bayero Salih-Farah, informed the Minister that the institute was accredited by the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) to run Diploma and Advanced Diploma programmes.
He also said that NITT had entered into affiliation with Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria to run Postgraduate and Master’s degree programmes.

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