By Yakubu Salisu, Kano
The Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETfund), says it has so far committed N9 billion to enable public tertiary institutions in Nigeria m undertake research in various disciplines under the National Research Fund (NRF).
The TETFund Executive Secretary, Prof. Suleiman Elias-Bogoro, made the disclosure on Monday at the 35th Conference of the Association of the Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities (AVCNU) in Kano State University of Science and Technology (KUST), Wudil.
The conference has theme titled: “Pathways to Green Investing, Creative Funding and DARQ Technology in Nigerian Universities”.
Elias-Bogoro, represented by the Hajiya Hadiza Abdullahi, Ass. Director, Research and Development Centres of Excellence explained that the fund awarded a total of 240 grants to the institutions.
He said that National Research Fund (NRF) was an intervention aimed at promoting the conduct of applied research and innovation by academics in public tertiary institutions.
According to him, the research and innovations would assist to drive socio-economic development of Nigeria in an increasingly globalized and highly competitive knowledge -driven approach.
In his remarks, Gov Abdullahi Ganduje, said that his administration would continue to accord education a top priority because no nation could developed above the level of its education system.
He said that was why the government declared free and compulsory education in the state.
Represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Usman Alhaji, Ganduje said the administration sponsored accreditation of over 240 academic programmes at the state owned-tertiary institutions.
He revealed that the government would begin consequential adjustments of salaries of staff in all the institutions.
The acting Chairman, AVCNU, Prof. Timothy Olagbemiro, said worldwide, universities were required to explore creative options to their finding challenges.
He said that Nigerian Higher Education System remained the largest in Africa, pointed out that currently, there were 197 universities in the country.
Prof. Olagbemiro said funding was the major challenge facing the Nigerian universities.
He said that the institutions were facing problem of attack, kidnap, which somtimes led to the killing of students.
“To address these challenges, we are proposing a meeting with all stakeholders to discuss the way forward, especially on ways to fund higher education in Nigeria and campus security,” he said.
Also, the Vice Chancellor, KUST Wudil, Prof. Shehu Alhaji-Musa, spoke extensively on the achievements recorded so far by the institution.
He said that the Chancellor of the university, Alhaji Aliko Dangote would sponsor recruitment of 15 professors for the institution for four years, within and outside the country.
Alhaji-Musa said that the chancellor promised to support the institution’s agricultural blueprint to cover over 1 million farmers on rice, sugarcane, tomatoes, palm oil and fish production.
Alhaji-Musa commended TETFund, CBN, NCC, National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP), among others for their continuous support to the university.
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