President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has reaffirmed his administration’s unwavering commitment to prioritize tertiary education, with a strong emphasis on producing highly skilled graduates capable of competing on the global stage.
The President emphasized the government’s dedication to bolstering educational institutions, making them globally competitive to drive economic and technological advancement. This statement was made during the unveiling of projects valued at over N873.666 million at Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU) and Tatari Ali Polytechnic (ATAP) in Bauchi State. These projects were executed as part of the 2021/2022 merged intervention programs of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund).
Represented by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Yusuf Maitama Tuggar, President Tinubu underscored the paramount importance of educational development within the agenda of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC)-led Federal Government.
He detailed various initiatives introduced by his administration, such as the student loan program, ongoing discussions with the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) to enhance student welfare, and the approval of a waiver for the ‘No Work, No Pay’ policy for members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
Additionally, President Tinubu disclosed his endorsement of an increase in the Education Tax (EDT) to 3 percent, effective from September 2023, with the aim of augmenting funding for the education sector.
He stated, “We have introduced the students’ loan initiative to facilitate access to tertiary education for financially disadvantaged students. I have personally engaged with the leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) to address the welfare of Nigerian students. Recently, I granted a waiver for the ‘No Work, No Pay’ policy imposed on the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), allowing union members to receive a portion of their withheld salaries. These actions are part of our deliberate efforts to address the challenges faced by students and foster harmonious relations between staff unions and the government.
As we all recognize, education plays a pivotal role in the socio-economic development of nations. Consequently, the inauguration of these projects at the university will undoubtedly contribute to the enhancement of teaching, learning, and the elevation of academic standards.
“I want to reiterate that education is an integral component of the Renewed Hope agenda of the Bola Ahmed Tinubu administration. Therefore, the Federal Government will continue to provide essential support to ensure that our educational institutions achieve global competitiveness, driving the country’s economic and technological advancement.”