The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) on Friday handed over the University of Ibadan Vocational School which it constructed in line with its capacity-building mandate and the Nigerian Content 10-year strategic roadmap.
Handing over the facility to the Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof Kayode Adebowale, the Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote described the completion and handing over of the facility as an important milestone in Nigerian content development, stressing that the strength of Nigeria’s economy and prosperity lies in the hands of craftsmen, artisans, and gifted workmen.
He hinted that the University of Ibadan is situated in Oyo Central Senatorial zone, which is represented by Senator Teslim Kolawole Folarin, who serves as the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Local Content and had supported the activities of the Board immensely. He described the event as a great opportunity to assess the Nigerian Content journey and the status of the 10-year strategic road map.
He said the vocational school is expected to produce top-rated craftsmen, artisans and gifted workmen, who would help Nigeria change the narrative of dependence on imported goods and equipment to full reliance on Nigerian-made products.
Noting that the University of Ibadan is Nigeria’s Premier University and renowned for academic success, the NCDMB boss challenged the centre to kick start the much-needed Nigerian industrial revolution.
He added that “with the rapid advancement of technologies and skills required now and for the energy transition and the future of the oil and gas industry, and the call for help from African countries, for Nigeria to support their nascent oil and gas industry with her established technical capabilities, the commissioning of this vocational school is a clarion call to the University of Ibadan to lead in the establishment of the Nigerian competitive advantage once again.
The scope of works executed at the center included construction of the main building consisting of three workshops and three classrooms, each for Mechanical, Electrical and Welding and Fabrication trades as well as offices for the centre’s director, admin staff and receptionist desk.
The Board’s investment also included construction of a generator and gate houses, provision of a borehole and water storage facility, fencing and landscaping of the centre’s premises, provision and installation of 500KVA generator and training of technical teachers to use the installed equipment.
Wabote advised the university community and stakeholders to ensure adequate maintenance of installed facilities, support in the sustainability, and appointment of high-quality personnel so that the huge investment will be justified, and the benefit will be maximized in the best interest of generations of youths from the area and beyond.
The University of Ibadan Vocational School is the third vocational school the Board would be developing. The Board had previously upgraded the Government Vocational College, Amoli, Awgu, in Enugu state and completed and handed over the Government Technical College, Abak in Akwa Ibom State, which is considered as a state-of-the-art factory in the production of wood works, furniture, and armoured doors.
In his remarks, Senator Folarin expressed delight that he facilitated the establishment of the multi-billion-naira hi-tech skills acquisition centre. He indicated that the facility was designed and constructed as a one-stop platform to train multitudes of Oyo State citizens in different skills across oil and gas and other sectors of the Nigerian economy.
He maintained that one of the expectations of leadership is to focus on projects and programs that impact the day-to-day lives of the people. “I am excited about the numbers of Oyo state citizens that will be equipped and eventually get employed as a result of this huge facility,” he added.