During an investigative hearing organized by a House of Representatives ad hoc committee on Tuesday, Sonny Echono, the Executive Secretary of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND), announced a shift in focus from foreign scholarships to local scholarships.
Echono explained that the current foreign exchange situation has made it impossible to continue sponsoring students for education abroad.
The House Committee is conducting an investigation into the alleged mismanagement of over N24 trillion. In his testimony, Echono highlighted the financial challenges caused by the disparity between the naira and the dollar exchange rates.
The allocated funds in naira are insufficient to cover the required dollars for overseas training. As a result, the fund is compelled to suspend foreign scholarships.
Echono emphasized that the focus will now be on conducting training locally through established universities and specialized institutions within the country. By utilizing the expertise of domestic institutions, TETFUND aims to retain resources and cope with the fluctuating foreign exchange rates.
Regarding the allegation of fund mismanagement, Echono clarified that it is the federal government that owes TETFUND. He revealed that the government’s debt to TETFUND amounts to N371.3 billion, of which only N48 billion has been paid so far.
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