The Federal Government has inaugurated visitation panels to 21 Federal Colleges of Education and 25 Federal Polytechnics.
At the event in Abuja, the Minister of Education Mallam Adamu Adamu said each panel is expected to review the performance of the institutions assigned, in the areas of governance, academic standards, quality assurance, management of finances, and relationship between management staff and students.
The Minister said the panel will also investigate the application of funds, particularly the special grants and loans meant for specific projects in order to determine the status of such projects and their relevance for further funding.
The Minister represented by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr Sonny Echono explained that panel would examine the law establishing the institutions and see in what ways the law has been observed in all its ramifications, particularly with regards to discipline by the Polytechnic authorities, staff and students, and also suggest any necessary modification to the law.
According to the minister, visitations are conducted every five years. The last of such visitations was conducted in 2012, but covered the period 2004—2010. In effect, the current exercise will cover a 10-year period, and presented in two separate five-year reports; 2011—2015 and 2016—2020.
In the current exercise, every panel is made up of seven members who have wide and varied experience in the academic and administrative organisation of tertiary institutions or other institutions in the public and private sectors of the economy.
Responding on behalf of the Chairmen of the visitation panels, Prof. Pai Obanya, Chairman Visitation Panel to Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo State said that the task before the panel was to fulfill the government’s desire to make the institutions grow for better service.
Professor Obanya pledged to respect the terms of reference within the given timeline while urging the government to do justice to the recommendations of the panel.