Tinubu urged to appoint Onoji as substantive PTI Principal

Samuel Onoji

The leadership of students and youth unions have called on President Bola Tinubu to appoint the acting Principal of Petroleum Training Institute (PTI), Dr Samuel Onoji, as the substantive Principal of the institute.

This appeal was contained in a letter addressed to the president and co-signed by the leadership of the different student/youth bodies and copies were made available to journalists on Sunday in Abuja.

The unions include the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), National Association of Polytechnic Students (NAPS), National Association of University Students (NAUS), National Association of Colleges of Education Students (NACES), Nigerian Youth Union (NYU) and the African Students Education Support Initiative (ASESI).

The letter was signed by Comrades Chinonso Obasi, National President, NYU, Lucky Emonefe, National President, NANS, Marshal Obaji, National President, NAUS, Bassey Eka, Nigerian Country-Rep, ASESI, Egunjobi Samuel, National President, NACES and Ridwan Opeyemi National President, NAPS.

The group said the peace the institute has been enjoying since the announcement of Onoji as the acting principal is one borne out of acceptance by all and sundry, ability to deliver on goals, integrity, ingenuity, unquestionable leadership, and charisma.

“Our interest is primarily in Nigerian students’ welfare and a peaceful academic environment.

“The testimonials from PTI students about Onoji affirm that he is the square peg in the square hole.

“As former Director of PTI services, an officer in charge of the day-to-day maintenance and repair of the infrastructure of the institute, he is described and addressed by students as a cat with nine lives.

“This is because of his availability to call to duty even at odd hours.”

The groups further highlighted students’ appraisals of Onoji’s competence.

“Under Onoji as chairman board of examiners, we have experienced seamless examinations; under his admission committee, PTI’s admissions have always been on merit.

“Achairman institute curriculum development committee, we have enjoyed rich curricula that place us ahead of other scholars in sister institutions.

“As a sound academia, he has published several papers in international reputable high-impact Elsevier journals, among others, which can be verified online, the letter read.

Furthermore, the groups said that the standard of PTI was falling because of the rising competing training institutes created by multinational companies.

According to them, the situation creates an urgent need for a seasoned and experienced Onoji who is the chairman of the PTI strategic team.

They, however, said that confirming Onoji as the Chief Executive Officer of the PTI would make significant impact on visibility of the Institute in the oil and gas industry.

“His appointment, we believe, will rekindle the lost glory of the Nigerian-only petroleum training institute and the institute, will in turn, contribute meaningfully to Nigeria’s GDP by upscaling its established mandate.

“Iis always said that ‘when preparation meets opportunity, success is abound’; Onoji’s preparedness for the task ahead is unquestionable.

“In April, he completed a 2-week mandatory training for heads of Federal Government Agencies/Parastatals at Administrative Staff College of Nigeria (ASCON), Topo-Badagry to further equip him with administrative skills to manage the institute.

“For the mandate of PTI which is to train competent technical manpower required for the sustainability of the Nigeria oil and gas industry to be achieved awesomely, we passionately recommend the appointment of Onoji as the Principal and Chief Executive Officer of PTI.

“This is because, in acting capacity, much cannot be achieved considering the government bureaucracy associated with it,’’ the group added.