Concerns Mount over Appointment of New CPN Head

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Emma Okonji

The Computer Professionals Registration Council of Nigeria (CPN), the government agency responsible for registration of computer professionals and computer technology practices in the country, has picked holes in the recent appointment of a new administrative head for the CPN, by the federal government.

The federal government had on Monday, terminated the appointment of 17 chief executives of agencies, parastatals and departments (MDAs) in the Federal Ministry of Education, and immediately appointed 17 new heads to oversee the affairs of the affected agencies, which include CPN.
Prior to the development, CPN had an acting Registrar, Mr. Idowu Olusile, who was the administrative head of CPN, because the agency is not controlled by chief executive, according to the 1993 ACT establishing it.

The pronouncement by government on Monday automatically puts a stop to the administrative powers of the acting Registrar of CPN, following government’s immediate appointment of Mr. Afolabi Aderinto as the new head of CPN.

The Chairman, Compliance and Enforcement at CPN, Mr. Rogba Adeoye, said the federal government acted in error because it was ill-advised on the operations of the CPN.
While calling for the reversal of the appointment, Adeoye told THISDAY it was wrong for the federal government to have included CPN on the list of the other 16 MDAs.

He said the 1993 Act establishing CPN, clearly stipulated that the Council of CPN must consist of 25 members, out of which, five must be nominated by Secretary to the Board of Technical Education, from the Federal Ministry of Education, and that the Secretary to the Federal Ministry of Education, which CPN belongs to, must be a council member.

Adeoye further said that the Act clearly stated that the CPN Council must appoint a Registrar who must have 10 years post call to the profession, indicating that the Registrar of CPN must be a registered financial member of CPN and appointed by council members.

He insisted that Aderinto is not qualified to head CPN because he is not a registered member of CPN and has not been paying his dues, even when he claims to be a practicing computer scientist. This he added, amounted to defrauding of the federal government and that such person should not be made to head CPN, since he does not belong to CPN.

“The pronouncement of Aderinto as the new head of CPN, clearly shows that government did not study the CPN Act very well, or that government chose to be misled by someone else,” Adeoye said.
He added: “The Federal Government prides itself as a custodian of the rule of law and should not be seen as violating the Act of Parliament as enshrined in the CPN Act of 1993. It should be noted that this instance should not come into play under the change mantra of the present administration.”
Furthermore, he said that the Federal Ministry of Education might have been ill-advised on the matter, since CPN does not have chief executive, but a President who is elected and a Registrar who is appointed by council members.

He said the announcement clearly stated that the federal government is under-rating the Council of Computer Professionals in the country and making it an all-comer affairs.
Adeoye advised the government to strictly abide to the rules setting up CPN and reverse the appointment order.

He said he was surprised at the announcement because CPN had earlier informed the Ministry of Education of its plans to appoint a new Registrar, following the advertisement it placed in newspapers on April 1, 2016, advertising the position of CPN Registrar.
He said CPN Council was in the process of employing a new Registrar and other management staff, and had informed the Federal Ministry of Education about it.

Deputy Director on Press, Federal Ministry of Education, Mr. Benjamin Goong, had on Monday this week, announced the appointment of 17 chief executives of agencies, parastatals and departments in the Federal Ministry of Education, which include CPN, and approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The 17 new chief executives had on Tuesday August 2, presented themselves in the office of the Minister of Education for further briefing on their new appointment.
The other 16 agencies and parastatals, include National Universities Commission (NUC); Nigerian Institute For Educational Planning and Administration (NIEPA); Universal Basic Education Board (UBEC); National Library of Nigeria (NLN); National Examinations Council (NECO), National Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult And Non-Formal Education (NCMLA&NE); Nomadic Education Commission (NEC) and National Business and Technical Examination Board (NABTEB).

Others include the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN); National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE); Tertiary Education Tax Fund (TETFund); National Teachers Institute (NTI); Librarian Registration Council of Nigeria (LRCN); National Mathematical Centre, (NMC); Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) and National Institute of Nigerian Languages (NINLAN).