Seriki Adinoyi in Jos
The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Jos, Prof Tanko Ishaya, has lamented that the Treasury Single Account (TSA) remains a major setback toward the smooth conduct of research in most universities because universities hardly get access to research funds.
Ishaya disclosed this at a training workshop on Research Administration and Management organised for staff members of the institution in Jos.
He called on the federal government to review the policy and allow universities to keep research funds in commercial banks for easy access.
He said, “The TSA policy where we keep research funds in the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is unfriendly because universities hardly access dollars from it, and when they do, CBN gives them at official rates. Unfortunately, when we want to acquire items for research, we don’t get them at official rates.”
Calling on the university staff to conduct impactful research, the VC promised to support any research that would attract funds to the university. He lamented that funds to universities from the Federal Government were dwindling seriously.
Advising Nigerian universities to conduct quality and innovative research to attract more funds that will enable them to function effectively, the Vice Chancellor added that with the dwindling funds accruing to universities in the country from the Federal Government, there was a need for more research to be conducted to have additional funds that will take care of their running costs.
“With the dwindling funds coming to the universities, we must, as teachers and managers of universities, think out of the box and find ways to survive and keep moving on,” Ishaya explained. “One of the ways to do that is by conducting research because it is a critical way of attracting grants to the institutions to survive. So, if universities want to survive, we must begin to conduct innovative and quality research so that we can attract funds to make them operate effectively.”
The director of the institution’s Research and Development office, Prof Musa Gaya, said the training, supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), was organised under the Northwestern Unijos Mentored Programme for Enhanced Research Administration (NUMPERA).
He explained that the two-day workshop was expected to equip participants with the requisite knowledge that would enable them to develop fundable proposals for the university.