Tertiary Education Trust Fund, TETfund, says more than 50 percent of its 2017 Direct Intervention Fund has been accessed.
The Executive Secretary of the Fund, Dr Abdullahi Bapha was speaking in Abuja during Voice of Nigeria Flagship Programme ’’In The News’’.
Dr Bapha also said that the Management of the Fund would soon embark on a tour across Nigeria to conduct interactive sessions with stakeholders and to ensure that scholars are fully aware of what is available for them and how to fully maximise.
According to him, over 20,000 scholars have been sponsored and trained in higher academic pursuit.
The Executive Secretary emphasised that allocation, disbursement and other aspects of the funds activities involve accountability.
Bapha explained “that the access clinic the fund conducted recently revealed that huge amount of money was left unaccessed.’’
He said that some institutions were not aware of government intervention funds and issue of incompetent contractors and transition between heads of public higher institutions were responsible for the unaccessed funds.
On the 2017 Direct Intervention Funds, Dr Bapha said that the government of President Muhammadu Buhari offered the biggest ever allocation to tertiary institutions.
“Never before except with the government of President Muhammadu Buhari that each university is getting over a billion naira , this is three times of what was been given before on the annual intervention. Tetfund deliberately plan to ensure maximum use of this fund, we then invited benefitting institutions to proposal and defense meeting to consider their plans and guide the institutions appropriately,” he stated.
On the 44 billion naira allocated to support lecturers up to the P.H.D level, The Tetfund Boss stated that the sum of 300 million Naira had been provided to each public higher institution to support in academic training.
“Education is the vehicle that will drive Nigeria to economic development, if the drivers are not properly trained it will not get the country to the expected destination,” he said.
“We are insisting as a country that we have a plan and projection, therefore we believe we should control where the scholars study abroad, we make sure they are trained where there is global competitiveness,” Dr Bapha said.
He continued: “Nigeria graduates are excelling abroad, to say that we should not be proud of them is unfair to the system, we are not there yet, we will much more be.”
He said that Tetfund was encouraging Nigerian scholars to study in best universities across the World.
Speaking on relationship with Voice Of Nigeria, Dr Bapha said the visit was to deepen existing relationship between the fund and the International Media Agency, VON.
The Director General of Voice Of Nigeria, Mr Osita Okechukwu said Nigeria being the 10th most populous Country in the World should continually take advantage of the 60% of its Population figure been youths.
He said Tetfund deploying funds on continual training of lecturers in public higher institutions was an important investment for the government.
Mr Okechukwu applauded the funds transparency system.
President Muhammadu Buhari had allocated the sum of N213 billion as direct intervention funds to all public higher institutions in Nigeria.