TETFund spends over N4bn on stranded foreign scholars

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By, Yusuf Abdullahi, Abuja

In fulfillment of its pledge to assist stranded foreign scholars sponsored under TETFund’s Academic Staff Training and Development Programme, the Fund has spent over N4 billion in resolving about 900 cases leaving a lesser number to sort out.

Executive Secretary TETFund, Prof. Suleiman Elias Bogoro stated this when he paid a visit to the Embassy of the United States in Abuja recently.

Prof. Bogoro who was at the Embassy to continue discussions on the partnership being worked out between the Fund and the US Fulbright Scholarship Programme stated that issue of stranded scholars around the world had become an embarrassment to the Fund and the Nation, hence he immediately swung into action upon reinstatement to address the problem.

He expressed pleasure that months after US officials paid a visit to the Fund to hold discussions on the partnership, most of the challenges he met surrounding the Fund’s Scholarship Programme have been resolved and responses from the scholars have been positive.

Prof. Bogoro also spoke about the determination of the Fund to institutionalize Research and Development (R&D) and promote the Triple Helix model in the country with a view to solving technological and developmental challenges.

He added that in demonstration of the Federal Government’s support for the promotion of R&D culture in Nigeria, the sum of N5 billion was recently approved for TETFund’s National Research Fund Programme.

While asserting the credibility of the Fund’s Scholarship Programme which has helped thousands of academic staff of public tertiary educational institutions in Nigeria acquire higher degrees, Prof. Bogoro said he looked forward to concretizing the partnership with the US Government to scale up the programme.

Speaking at the meeting, the Cultural Affairs Officer at the Embassy, Mr.Sterling Tilley thanked Prof. Bogoro and the Management of the Fund for their commitment towards actualizing the partnership.

Mr. Tilley stated that after the initial meeting between officials of the US Embassy and the Executive Secretary at the TETFund Office earlier in the year, progress has been made on finalizing an agreement.

He added that the partnership is already undergoing review by the Fulbright legal team and Education Bureau.

Some officials of the Embassy who spoke at the meeting commended the Executive Secretary for partnering with the Industry in reinvigorating R&D to enhance economic development.

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