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The House of Representatives has passed the bill which seeks to end all forms of discrimination between First Degree and Higher National Diploma for the purpose of employment, transfer of service, the conversation of cadre, career progression, promotion and in other related issues in the public and private sectors of the Nigerian economy, through Third Reading.
According to one of the provisions of the bill sponsored by Hon Yakubu Barde, Clause 1(a) provides that: “First Degrees and Higher National Diplomas in the same profession and or field shall be deemed and treated as exact equivalent graduate certificates.”
Clause 1(b) further provides that: “All forms of discrimination and or dichotomy between First Degrees and the Higher National Diplomas in the same profession or field in any form whatsoever is hereby abolished.”
Clause 1(c) of the bill also provides that: “All forms of discrimination and or dichotomy between First Degrees and Higher National Diplomas in the same profession or field in any form whatsoever is hereby prohibited.
To this end, the proposed law in Clause 1(d) provides that “No person, entity (body or corporate) in whatsoever name called shall discriminate and or undertake any action in any form whatsoever which is construed as and or intended to give any preferential treatment in favour and or against holders of First Degree or Higher National Diploma in the same field or profession.”
In the bid to ensure compliance, Clause 2(a) which provides for Contravention of this Law by a corporate entity and or an individual is an offence punishable on conviction, stipulates that: “To a fine not exceeding N5 million to the staff found guilty in the case of a corporate entity;
Clause 2(b) also provides that anyone found guilty shall be subjected to a fine not exceeding N1 million or imprisonment not exceeding 5 years or both, in the case of an individual.
Recall that the Senate had on June 2, 2021 passed the bill through Third Reading.
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