The Director, National Open University of Nigeria’s Centre for Human Resource Development (NOUN-CHRD), Dr. Aminu Umar and his entourage have paid a courtesy call on the Commandant, Nigerian Air Force Institute of Technology, (AFIT) on the need to partner in the area of Skills and Manpower Development.
The director, in his speech, extended the felicitation of the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Olufemi Peters, which he pronounced was adequately aware and passionate with the historic visit.
The director maintained that like the AFIT, NOUN is well represented in Kaduna and the country at large.
One of the major activities of the National Open University of Nigeria in Kaduna is the basing of its Faculty of Agricultural Sciences in Kaduna outside the university headquarters, said Umar.
On the other hand, the director stated that NOUN-CHRD was established as an arm of the university saddled with the responsibility of providing corporate social responsibility to Nigerians.
He added that the centre has about eight units which include Fire Service Unit , water Factory, Skills Artisans and Guest House.
The Artisan unit, according to the director, was created to address the lingering engineering problem in Nigeria, which, according to him, is one of the critical areas neglected.
“And also to deal with the issue of unemployment in the country as the government cannot absorb the high volume of graduates our universities produce,” he said.
He, therefore, sought for a partnership between the NOUN Centre for Human Resource Development and the Nigerian Air Force Institute of Technology, Kaduna, in the area of Skills Acquisition Development and Manpower Development.
This was deemed necessary because of the availability of robust workshop at AFIT capable of providing conducive atmosphere of learning with modern facilities, Umar said.
He expressed that “In light of these reasons we have come to sign Memorandum of Understanding with AFIT and be able to see how we can add value to the people of Nigeria.”
He maintained that the collaboration at this time when the insecurity prevailed in Kaduna can be able to bring out numerous youth out of this menace.
Umar thanked the Commandant and the Management of the institute for showing their readiness to build a robust collaboration.
The Commandant, AFIT, Air Vice Marshall, M. A Yakubu, in his remarks, briefly highlighted the historical evolution of the institute.
It commenced in 1977 as a technical chain of the Nigerian Air Force tasked with the responsibility of providing engineers to maintain its facilities.
He added that in 2008, the institution sought an accreditation with the National Board of Technical Education and become a Polytechnic.
On realizing the continued increase of students enrollment from the Nigeria Defence Academy , other institutions they swung into action for degree programs, said the Commandant.
Moreover, he intimated that in 2017 the institution act was signed into a degree awarding institution with the National Universities Commission accreditation.
The Commandant stated that AFIT will collaborate with NOUN in order to breach the gap in Manpower Development in the country.
He further expressed that the institution have an existing collaboration with other universities like Ahmadu Bello University Zaria.
He stated that the institution is a university as well as a Polytechnic for some special reasons.
“Therefore, it is a welcome development to collaborate with the National Open University of Nigeria since without any doubt there would be an exchange of mutual benefit,” said AFIT Commandant.
He emphasized on the need when all things gone as expected the two stakeholders would focus on Artisans development since there were adequate facilities to carry out the project.
The highlight of the visit was a tour round and inspection of facilities at Workshop for Aerospace Engineering, Aerospace Workshop Maintenance Power Plant, Mechanical and Aerospace Ground Engineering Department and Metallurgical and Material Science Department.
Present during the visit were top Management Officers with some head of departments of the Institution among others.