Wednesday, 18 January 2017



This story was sent in by Ndidiamaka Ndukwe from Imo State...

The Federal Polytechnic Nekede Owerri under the leadership of Dr (Mrs.) Cele Njoku has again made history as her first ever public lecture held recently at the 1000 capacity auditorium with the theme: Re-aligning Nigerian Economy to Global Competitiveness: The Role of Polytechnic Graduates.

Presenting her address, the Chairman of the occasion Dr (Mrs) Cele Njoku who is also the Rector of the Federal Polytechnic Nekede welcomed everyone to the event which she described as epoch-making, saying history is being made as His Royal Highness, Eze Godwin Onyewuchi Merenini becomes the very first distinguished public lecturer having been a committed alumnus of this institution and the traditional ruler of the host community.

Dr. Njoku said Federal Polytechnic Nekede is known for its commitment to maintaining international best standards of excellence in its academic programmes, including convocations, conferences, seminars, workshops and public lectures stressing that they provide various platforms from which staff and students can interact with scholars and eminent persons who have distinguished themselves in various fields.

“We have, for instance had the first ever inaugural lecture delivered by my humble self, two foundation lectures delivered by two distinguished alumni. These are quite apart from the usual convocation, conferences, seminars and workshops lectures that are continually going on within and outside the campus including overseas courses for staff”. she opined.

The rector maintained that it is the desire of her administration to sustain the tempo of these intellectual developmental courses for the benefit of the institution and the communities around it assuring that the public lecture series shall also be sustained as an avenue for interacting with eminent persons in society and sipping from their wealth of experience for the benefit of the institution, staff and students.

Delivering the lecture entitled, Re-Aligning Nigerian Economy To Global Competitiveness: The Role of The Polytechnic Graduates, HRH Eze Godwin Onyewuchi Merenini (Dibia 1 of Umudibia Autonomous Community), expressed gratitude to God, the rector and her management team for the opportunity given to him to deliver the maiden public lecture. He praised the rector for transforming the polytechnic with infrastructural developments recalling how he was still watching Dr. Njoku in her first tenure but now he has seen and believed with his eyes that she is working. 

Eze Merenini stated that Nigerian Economy as a global entity is monitored by world bodies and report of the progress or otherwise, is released periodically for continued measures to be adopted, pointing out that Global Competitiveness Index (GCI) is one of the tools used by the World Economic Forum to keep nations awake to the need for sustained inclusive economic growth. He noted that Nigeria as an economy has remained less competitive in the global ranking since the 2007 updated methodology to Global Competitiveness ranking when compared with other African countries such as South Africa and Cote dIvoire.

The traditional ruler asked who the managers of Nigeria economy are. According to him, they are the PhD, M.Sc, and B.Sc holders who he said have not managed the economy well stressing that until the government and companies start using our polytechnic graduates, Nigerian economy will remain in recession.

However, he enumerated some characteristics of a polytechnic graduate which made him peculiar and different from other graduates as; polytechnic graduates being among the skilled labours of the nation that determine the productive capacity, they are because of their training among the think-tanks in various organizations that map out strategies to enhance the demand of Nigerian made goods & services, polytechnic graduates are key decision makers and participants in several governmental legal formulations on business operations adding that no polytechnic graduate who knows his worth carry files around looking for government employment as he has acquired skills already to start off his life after graduation hence polytechnic products are job creators and not job seekers.

Making his remarks, HRH Eze Samuel Ohiri (Eze Imo), Chairman, Council of Imo State Traditional Rulers expressed happiness over the opportunity given to Eze Merenini by the Rector and the Lecture Organizing Committee to deliver such a wonderful lecture. Eze Ohiri added that he never knew that Eze Merenini was a wonderful banker and a professional in finance while expressing shock at the level of infrastructural development and transformation all around the institution. 

The event featured award presentation to the Rector as Best Rector since 1976 – 2016 from Federal Polytechnic Nekede Alumni Association while Royal Highnesses, Principal Officers; SUG Officials were among the dignitaries that graced the occasion.


Disclaimer: Comment expressed do not reflect the opinion of Isaac Yoma