PTDF SCHOLARSHIP: The Agonies Of Abandoned, Weeping Child
By Noel Akor
The Petroleum Technology Development Fund, (PTDF), was established by Act 25 of 1973, later amended in year 2000. The mandate of the agency is to serve as a vessel for the development of indigenous manpower and technology transfer acquisition in the petroleum industry.
From all indication, the agency has effectively discharged this responsibility through the conduct and administration of scholarship programmes for Nigerian students to study professional courses in petroleum as well as in gas related activities both in our local institutions and foreign universities.
This year, the PTDF shortlisted 8,800 candidates for its 2022/2023 scholarship scheme, for studies in the relevant professional fields in the oil and gas sector. Incidentally, the agency is in the process of conducting interviews for the shortlisted candidates, region by region.
Suddenly, the Nigerian factor crept into the selection process as the management of the PTDF announced that it will not be able to go to the South East, to hold the interview due to perceived insecurity.
Clearly, it beats every rational thinking person hollow, how the agency came to such conclusion, whereas the North West, and the North East are suitably found comfortable for the interview, the troubled security concerns notwithstanding. As if, that was not bad enough, and for good measure, an official of the agency was reported to have asked interested South East candidates to travel to Bauchi or any other place to be interviewed.
Interestingly, Kaduna was found comfortable with holding the interview but places like Enugu, Umuahia, or Abakaliki were completely ruled out.
The worry, really is that such horrible decision with tainted political colouration is not palatable for Nigeria, especially in these days of open marginalization against the South East.
To say, the least, such brazen display of hatred against a section of the country begs for many questions and answers to compassionately address the injustice meted out to this section of Nigeria. Unfortunately, those in charge at PTDF have not displayed enough leadership in the management of a complex society such as ours.
Going forward, the management of PTDF should have the moral rectitude if they ever care to redress the matter without much ado.
Like John Maxwell, submitted, the leadership of PTDF, should not forget that everything falls and rises on leadership.