President Tinubu Set To Launch Students Loan Scheme, Application App Ready.

In accordance with his campaign pledge, President Bola Tinubu is scheduled to inaugurate the Students Loan Scheme this week, barring any unforeseen circumstances.

The government-engaged IT specialists have concluded testing on the student loan application, which is now operational.

It is worth noting that the Access to Higher Education Act, 2023, was ratified by President Tinubu on June 12, 2023. This legislation grants interest-free financing to economically disadvantaged students who wish to pursue higher education at any Nigerian tertiary institution.

The action was taken to “fulfill one of his campaign promises to liberalize education funding,” according to a member of the presidential strategy team Dele Alake.

Additionally, the Nigerian Education Loan Fund was instituted under the Act, commonly referred to as the Students Loan Law. This fund is tasked with the management of loan requests, grants, disbursements, and recovery efforts.

An official who was diligently working around the clock had guaranteed that the Student Loan Scheme would be introduced on February 21. However, the government failed to meet this deadline while continuing to seek funding for the scheme.

Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, a significant opponent of the scheme, characterized it as discriminatory between children of wealthy and underprivileged parents.

Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, national president of ASUU, stated, “Our stance on student loans is well-known; by extending them, you burden children of poor families with debt and loans subsequent to their graduation.” Discriminatory in nature. According to what I have read online, this opportunity is only available to children whose parents have an annual income of N500,000 or more. Therefore, that means if your father earns less, you won’t benefit.”

The student loan scheme, which was opposed by the Bauchi Zone of ASUU, was characterized as an attempt to enslave Nigerian students in debt. Lazarus Maigoro, zonal coordinator, raised doubts regarding the viability of the loan program, mentioning worries concerning the burdensome it would impose on students.

Conversely, he proposed that Nigerian students be awarded non-refundable grants rather than loans, while emphasizing the psychological distress that students might experience during their studies and the impending burden of graduating with significant responsibilities.

“Who will be responsible for repaying the loan?” What is the fate of those who can not access it? Maigoro posed a question and described the anguish that students endured as a result of the country’s harsh economic realities, attributing the financial burden to what he believed to be the government’s neglect in funding universities.

It is worth noting that on January 22, 2024, Akintunde Sawyerr, the Executive Secretary of the Student Loan Board, declared that the forthcoming student loan application would be completely devoid of human intervention. He stated that the primary objective of the Access to Higher Education Act 2023 was to guarantee that financial constraints do not hinder Nigerians from pursuing tertiary education.

According to gathered reports, the student loan application test run has concluded, and the official app for the registration procedure may be made available shortly.

Prior to accessing the application, students are obligated to provide certain information, including their JAMB registration number, date of birth, national identification number (NIN), and biometric verification number (PVN).

Source: BitvNews

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