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Nigeria Approves Disbursement of N320.3bn to Varsities, Others

Nigeria’s federal government has approved the 2023 disbursement guidelines for the sum of N320,345,040, 835 as intervention to public tertiary institutions across the country.

The Executive Secretary of TETFund, Sonny Echono, at a workshop organised for beneficiary institutions, disclosed that on the basis of this, each university shall get for the 2023 intervention cycle, the sum of N1,154,732,133.00.

This comprised N954,732,123.00 as annual direct disbursements and N200 million as zonal intervention.

According to him, each Polytechnic would get N699,344,867.00 comprising N569,344,807.00 as annual direct disbursements, and N130 million as zonal intervention, while each College of Education shall get N800,862,602 comprising of N670,862,602.00 as annual direct disbursement and N130 million as zonal intervention.

“It is pertinent to note that this represents the highest disbursement to each beneficiary institution, since inception of the Fund.

“I should also place on record that the fortunes of the Nigerian tertiary education sector improved significantly under the Buhari administration.

“Between 2015 to date (eight years), the total sum of N1.702 trillion has been disbursed as EDT collection to public universities, polytechnics and colleges of education compared to a total sum of N1.249trillion disbursed from the inception of the Fund in 1993 up to 2014 (21 years).”

This remarkable success he noted, was due to sustained efforts at expanding and increasing efficiency of collection of the Education Tax and added impetus was the gracious approval of Mr. President for an increase in education tax from two per cent to 2.5 per cent in the year 2021.

“We are grateful to all the key actors, notably Malam Adamu Adamu, Minister of Education; Mrs. Zainab Ahmed Shamsuna, Minister of Finance, the Chairmen and members of the Senate and House Committees on Finance and my brother Mohammed Nami, Chairman. Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS)”, he said.

Speaking further, he said: “May I also seize this opportunity to appeal to Mr. President, as a parting gift to the education sector and a fitting finale to his manifest desire to improve education funding in the country, for his ascent to the Finance Act 2023, which provides for a further increase in education tax from 2.5 per cent to three per cent.

“You will recall that at the Year 2022 workshop, several crucial issues were discussed. It provided me with the opportunity to listen to several complaints and problems facing several beneficiary institutions and we were able to respond appropriately to many of the issues raised and committed to looking into those that required our careful examination and review,” he added.

Among some of the problems discussed were the issues of abandoned or non-completion of projects in institutions which constituted a serious challenge to the Board of Trustees in ensuring allocative efficiency and value for disbursed funds.

He further disclosed that the Fund has since reviewed the disbursement process on the internal audit clearance requirement and also engaged on a one-on-one meeting with affected institutions with the aim of resolving this persistent problem.

Source : Arise