Nigerian lawmakers make the most significant decisions that affect Nigerian lives with a process as simple as shouting “Aye” or “Nay”, but how much do Nigerians know about the thought process? The Motion will spotlight the most interesting ideas that Nigerian lawmakers are implementing for the country. Most times, it’ll be about what the lawmakers think about the ideas, other times it’ll be about what Nigerians themselves think.
The House of Representatives believes we have a serious problem — first-class graduates in Nigeria are roaming the streets without jobs. So, lawmakers in the chamber proposed a solution: automatic jobs for first-class graduates in the ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) of the government.
The lawmakers passed a motion to this effect during a plenary session on March 16th 2022 after nearly an hour of debate on the pros and cons of the proposed solution.
For The Motion, we compiled the best arguments lawmakers made in favour and in opposition to the motion to give automatic civil service jobs to first-class graduates.
Ahmed Idris Wase
Sincerely speaking, it’s not all that’s on paper that represents what’s in the head. There are those that’ll come with wonderful results, but nothing to show and they can’t compete with you. I’ll not subscribe that somebody will go and read history and social studies and get automatic employment. Yes, we encourage academic performance, but examination is not the best test of knowledge.
This motion will help to motivate Nigerian youths, especially those involved in crime, to read their books. The students that make distinctions in polytechnics and federal colleges of agriculture should be included because they’re almost equivalent to BSc holders. We’re lacking teachers in our various education sectors, so NCE holders should also be included.
If we insist on automatic jobs for first-class graduates, it’ll encourage academic corruption. Even as it is today, we’re trying to manage the level of corruption existing within the tertiary institutions in Nigeria. If we insist that everybody who gets first-class automatically gets employed, then people would be “pushing” people at every level. If you need 4.5 CGPA to make first-class and you have 4.43 CGPA, they’ll say, “Let’s just ‘push it.'”
We need the best brains in Nigeria. When international organisations hear about the exploits of some of our students and how smart and clever they are, they seek them out here.
There are too many first-class graduates out there who don’t have jobs. It’s not good that somebody will burn the midnight oil for years, and at the end of the day is thrown out on the streets and cannot get a job. I think Nigeria should start doing things for students, especially encouraging them.
We have to be very careful. If you have first-class in Hausa, Igbo or Yoruba language, does that mean you’re automatically qualified over people who have second-class upper in any other subjects? What will be the value of what you have to the system? We should restrict the automatic jobs to fields like technology, science and medicine.
A lot of first-class graduates are unemployed. They’re all over the streets roaming without employment, but you’ll see a third class graduate who earns a lot of money under some parastatals duly employed. The idea of this motion is to encourage hard work. If somebody graduates with a first-class, it’ll be good if we encourage such a person with automatic employment.
Our constitution says nobody should be discriminated against. I agree that somebody who has first-class must be one of the best brains in the place, but we have a lot of people who can be better than first-class people. We shouldn’t compel the government to employ first-class graduates.
People who have struggled to come out in flying colours are roaming the streets. In the process, we’re not encouraging others to be studious or take academics seriously. Our children that have achieved first-class should be considered for automatic jobs to encourage others and serve as an impetus to study hard. Those that’ll make first-class corruptly are insignificant.
It’s not every first-class graduate that’s the best. You can even see second-class upper graduates that are better than first-class. The government can give first-class graduates consideration and test them before they’re given automatic employment. I believe we need first-class graduates more in the MDAs. Our MDAs are not working because most of the people there are incompetent.