TETFund to spend N292.7bn for tertiary institutions

The Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) management said  the Fund has approved the sum of N292.7bn for disbursement to selected  public higher institutions of learning nationwide
The Executive Secretary of  TETFUND, Prof. Suleiman Elias Bogoro, stated this Tuesday in Abuja when he hosted all heads of beneficiary institutions to a one-day stakeholders briefing, at the Nigerian Airforce Conference Centre, Abuja.

The TETFund boss also disclosed that the federal government had given the responsibility of completing the national library headquarters  building in Abuja to TETFund, explaining that the library project represents an important national asset that should not be ignored on account of funding challenges.

He said the intervention which had been okayed by the federal government, would be spread to universities and other higher educational institutions in each of the six geo-political zones  across the country.

TETFund, according to 2021 plans,  will give N906m to one university each from the six geo-political zones, while N628m will go to one polytechnic and one college of education from each of the six geo-political zones.

Bogoro  who also emphasised the importance of research to national development, said the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari had been consistent in approving funds to see that scholars undertake quality research that would address emerging challenges facing the country.

Bogoro said the need to solve society’s problems called for the setting up of the National Research Foundation, which has consistently increased from N3bn to N8.5bn in recent times.

The excited Bogoro said that Nigeria was moving closer to an emergence of a National Research and Development Foundation, therefore, challenged academics in the country to turn around the nation’s fortunes through cutting-edge research.

“Let us apply our innovative research outcome to solve the security problem, let us bring back value addition to the solid minerals that we are blessed with; it is one gold we have not explored to any significant level,” Bogoro said.
Speaking on the 2021 research grants to lecturers, Bogoro called on Nigerian academics to live up to expectations by writing good proposals, promising  support to finance such exercise.

“I have signed the letters of allocation for the research grants that we are issuing out, 217. This is the highest research grant ever. It has never gone beyond 200. We have 217 research grants that have recently been approved,” he said.

On the recent special allocations by the TETFund’s Board of Trustees, Bogoro revealed that N5 bn each had been approved for the University of Lagos and Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, for massive completion of infrastructural projects. 

Of this, Bogoro said N1bn was also approved for the fencing of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, and another N1bn for Imo State Polytechnic, Umuagwo. 

Bogoro said TETFund is also providing support to boost research activities in Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria (DICON), among others, to deal with the nation’s security challenges.

Bogoro stated  further that the TETFund had provided N1bn to one university in the six geo-political zones for medical research and for providing facilities for treatment of major ailments like prostate cancer, kidney problems, among others.

“With the Urology and kidney facilities made available, we are expecting a number of our teaching hospitals to come up with the capacity granted the equipment we provided, they should be able to do kidney transplant and the like in our universities. We intend to continue strengthening some in terms of cancer facilities, urology research clinical facilities and heart facilities,” he said.

Bogoro made it clear that from August 2021 henceforth, emphasis would be placed on master’s or PhD programmes that are science-based such as Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering, Biosciences, Biomedical Engineering, Material Science and Engineering, Industrial Systems and Engineering, Geosciences, Behavioural Sciences, Nuclear Engineering, Oceanography, Mathematics and Mechanical Engineering.