The bill for an Act seeking to end the difference and discrimination between Higher National Diploma (HND) graduates and University degree graduates yesterday passed second reading on the floor of the House of Representatives.
The idea behind the bill was to create equal opportunities for graduates from Nigerian polytechnics and their university counterparts as it concerns employment and promotions.
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 has been refereed the House Committee on Tertiary Institutions and Services.
Hon. Ali Isa J.C., while leading the debate, stressed that the discrimination is illegal as there is no law backing such discrimination. He mentioned that HND Higher National Diploma (HND) graduates have suffered discrimination over the years which has affected their career growth.
“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,” he said.
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.