The bill seeking to put an end the age long dichotomy between Higher National Diploma (HND) and university degrees yesterday passed for a second reading during a plenary session at the House of Representatives yesterday.
Consequently, the bill was referred to the House Committee on Tertiary Institutions and Services.
The bill which was co-sponsored by the member representing Balanga Billiri federal constituency of Gombe State, Hon. Ali Isa J.C. and the member representing Jos South/Jos East federal constituency of Plateau State, Hon. Edward Pwajok, seek to get equal opportunities for graduates from universities and polytechnics, in terms of employment and promotions.
According to him, HND holders in the country over the years have suffered serious discrimination, which in turn has affected their career progression.
He said, for instance, while a First Degree holder in the country is employed at Grade level 8 and could get to Grade 17, the HND holder is employed at Grade level 7 and cannot exceed Grade Level 14.
In his words :
“There have been circulars issued by the HoS at different times, either to direct that both university graduates and HND holders be treated equally or otherwise. The policy of government has been very consistent, but when it becomes a law, everybody will have to comply,”.