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Tinubu expands Student-Loan Programme to include skill development

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President Bola Tinubu has instructed the Nigeria Education Loan Fund (NELFUND) to broaden its scope by offering interest-free loans to Nigerian students interested in skill-development programs.

The directive was issued during a briefing at the State House on Monday.

Mr. Akintunde Sawyerr, the Executive Secretary of NELFUND, presented the plan for the upcoming launch of the expanded program.

President Tinubu emphasized the importance of the scheme accommodating individuals not inclined towards traditional university education, recognizing the significance of skill acquisition alongside academic qualifications.

“This is not an exclusive program. It is catering to all of our young people. Young Nigerians that are gifted in different areas.

This is not only for those who want to be doctors, lawyers, and accountants.

It is also for those who aspire to use their skilled and trained hands to build our nation,” stated the President.

He directed NELFUND to explore opportunities for incorporating skill-development programs into the initiative, highlighting the diversity of career paths that young Nigerians may choose.

The President underscored the need for equity and inclusivity in program management, ensuring that accredited and qualified students, regardless of economic status, have access to the loan for their higher education.

NELFUND’s Executive Secretary, Mr. Akintunde Sawyerr, outlined the technology-driven approach to the loan application process, emphasizing its perpetual nature.

The funds, designated for Nigerian students, will be electronically transferred directly to institutions to minimize the risk of maladministration.

Additionally, Dr. Zacch Adedeji, Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), assured that funding sources have been secured to support the program’s successful launch and sustainability.

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The Education Tax Fund is being reviewed to address the financial needs of university students across all local government areas, as both vocational and traditional education are prioritized.

The President’s directive signifies a commitment to resolving education funding challenges in Nigeria, providing students with diverse educational opportunities.

 

*Chief Ajuri Ngelale

Special Adviser to the President

(Media & Publicity)

January 22, 2024*


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