By Kuni Tyessi in Abuja
The federal government has approved the sum of N161 billion to be used for the 2019 interventions in benefitting public tertiary institutions across the country.
The Executive Secretary of TETFUND, Dr. Abdullahi Baffa who made this known Friday, while addressing newsmen in Abuja, disclosed that each benefitting university would get an allocation of over 700 million naira, while each benefitting polytechnic and College of Education would get over 500m naira each with a little difference in favour of polytechnics.
According to him, the increased intervention was as a result of an increase in the 2017 Education Tax Collection which stands at over N200 billion, and as such, public tertiary institutions now have an opportunity to enjoy more scholarships, research funds and infrastructural development.
He said: “The approval of the 2018 intervention budget by Mr. President in December 2018 heralds the commencement of the 2019 TETFund intervention activities. The approved sum of N161billion has been allocated to the eligible institutions for 2019 intervention activities in accordance with the provisions of the TETFund Act 2011.
“Consequently, each public university will get an allocation of N785,832,700.00; each public polytechnic N536,703,502.00; and each College of Education will get an allocation of N510,084,900.00 respectively. The detailed breakdown of the allocations will be released after the Fund communicates the allocation letters to the institutions.
“As at November 2018, the total Education Tax collection stands at N200,793,193,208.54. This shows an increase of about 25.47% over the previous year’s collection of N154.9 billion. The growth in the Education Tax collection is a clear confirmation that Nigeria’s economy has recovered from the avoidable recession it was plunged into by the previous administration.
“The increased collection will obviously translate to a bigger allocation for public tertiary education institutions and therefore more projects, more scholarships, more research funds in the institutions,” he added.
Baffa who noted that over N133.84 billion was disbursed by the Fund to tertiary institutions in 2018 as against the sum of N69.18 billion in 2017, explained that this 93.5% increase in disbursement was possible due to the 2017 projects proposal defense and access clinic organised for benefitting institutions by TETFUND.
“Fund disbursement for the period January-December, 2018 across the various intervention lines was N133.84 billion. The distribution across the three levels are: Universities – N66.93 billion, Polytechnics – N32.37 billion, Colleges of Education –N32.65 billion while others were N1.89 billion.
The Fund reaped the benefits of its 2017 Projects Proposal Defense and Access Clinic for institutions in 2018 with about 97% increase in access of intervention fund by Beneficiary Institutions from N69.18B in 2017 to N133.84B in 2018,” he added.