FG Explains Delay In Take-Off Of Student Loan Scheme, Sets Fresh Date

Adoga Stephen By Adoga Stephen - Editor-In-Chief
3 Min Read

The Federal Government has announced that the Nigeria Education Loan Fund portal for eligible students will open in March.

Dr. Akintunde Sawyer, the Executive Secretary of NELFund, revealed this information in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja.

He encouraged eligible students to register to access the fund. President Bola Tinubu signed the Access to Higher Education Bill into law on June 12, 2023, allowing indigent students to receive interest-free loans for their education at Nigerian tertiary institutions.

Originally scheduled to start between September and October 2023, the program was delayed until January due to unforeseen circumstances.

Sawyer explained that the scheme was delayed from its original start date due to technical reasons. Necessary measures had to be implemented to ensure proper execution of the project.

“The take-off date is this month (March) and the reason for the delay is that we are trying to get it right.

“This is not a political programme where we say, oh! we are just going to do it, it doesn’t matter how it works.

“This is a programme that will probably run beyond me as a human being, not even as a Secretary. This is something that we want to run adequately, so we have to get it right,’’ he said.

Sawyerr emphasized President Tinubu’s dedication to ensuring that a lack of funds would not prevent any student in Nigeria from continuing their education at a higher level.

He also mentioned that the program is specifically for financially disadvantaged Nigerian students in tertiary institutions, and the application process will be conducted online.

“We have decided that all applicants should be able to access this scheme regardless of where they are, who they are and who they know.

“We want this to be a process that is fair to all and we will advertise the portal widely so that applicants will be able to go to the website to fill series of forms and answer certain questions.

“Based on the data they input and their answers to the questions, the system will be able to determine appropriately, whether they are eligible to apply or not,’’ Sawyer explained.

The FG mentioned that the beneficiaries of the NELFund will start the recovery process two years after completing the National Youth Service Scheme.

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By Adoga Stephen Editor-In-Chief
Stephen studied Mass Communication at the Lagos State Polytechnic, Ikorodu (now Lagos State University of Science and Technology), where he acquired requisite training for the practice of journalism. He loves the media, and his interest mostly lies in print medium, where his creative writing skill makes him a perfect fit.