CBN Awaits Mandate from OAGF to Pay Nigerian Scholars Abroad

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Ferdinad Ekechukwu

As Nigerian scholars on the various bilateral agreement programmes outside the shores of the country await the payment of their last tranche for 2020, a source at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) told our correspondent yesterday that the payment could only be processed when payment mandate is received either from the Federal Ministry of Education or the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation.

The payment, which was supposed to cover a period between September and December 2020 is still outstanding at a period when the global lockdown is said to be exposing the scholars to pressing financial needs since they have to take precautionary steps in the midst of the crisis.

A source from CBN said the apex bank was still expecting a mandate from the Ministry of Education or from the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation as at yesterday.

The Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu had told THISDAY few weeks ago that efforts were ongoing to ensure the scholars were promptly paid.

He explained that there was no need for any of the student to be broke if they have been handling their finances well.

He said, “Documents covering funds for September to December 2020 for remittance to BEA countries were processed and sent to the CBN on November 19, 2020 for remittance to the BEA countries.

“The issue of exchange rate differential, as a result of fluctuations of the dollar to naira exchange rate has also been processed and submitted for approval,” the minister said, adding that the federal government is up date with its scholarship payments.

Meanwhile, efforts to get the response of the Accountant General of the Federation, Alhaji Ahmed Idris did not succeed as his phone was not reachable.

The short message sent to his phone was not responded to either as at the time of going to press.