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Buhari approves N18bn for take-off of 4 new specialised varsities

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President Muhammadu Buhari PHOTO: FACEBOOK/Femi Adesina

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a take-off grant of N18 billion for the establishment of new universities of technology and health sciences.

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The new universities of technology will be located in Jigawa and Akwa Ibom states, while the universities of health sciences will be established in Azare, Bauchi State and Ila Orangun, Osun State.

Announcing the establishment of the new institutions in Abuja on Monday, the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, said the objective is to stimulate rapid technological transformation of the country.

The minister, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Sunny Echono, noted that the approval was also in fulfilment of President Buhari’s promise to establish a National Institute of Technology (NIT) in Abuja with six satellite universities of technology, one in each of the six geo-political zones of the country.

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The minister said the new universities of technology will be established in 2021 while the upgrade of the existing four Universities of Technology and the National Institute of Technology will come on stream next year.

He said, “After a comprehensive review of the policy by key stakeholders in the education sector, it was resolved that the four (Anos) existing Universities of Technology located in Yola (North East), Akure (South West), Owerri (South East) and Minna (North Central) be upgraded and equipped while two (2nos) additional Universities of Technology to be located in Jigawa and Akwa Ibom States, would be established for the purpose.

“Similarly, a National Institute of Technology (NIT) shall be established in Abuja. The Institute shall be patterned after similar institutions in Singapore and Malaysia to serve essentially as a postgraduate centre devoted to research and innovation, drawing the best graduates from the six (6nos) Universities of Technology, as well as other exceptional graduates from reputable universities within and outside Nigeria.

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“I am pleased to inform you that President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the phased development programme, compelled by our lean resources. Accordingly the 2nos new Universities of Technology will be established in 2021 while the upgrade of the existing 4nos Universities of Technology and the National Institute of Technology will come on stream next year.

“With the recent establishment of the only Federal Government owned University of Health Sciences, Otukpo in Benue State and the huge gap in Doctor-patient ratio as well as in medical research and production of pharmaceutical products, Government recognized the compelling need to establish two (2nos) other specialized universities in Health, Nutrition and Medical Sciences to be located at Azare, Bauchi State and Ila Orangun, Osun State.

“These shall lay a solid foundation for building national preparedness and resilience in anticipation of future challenges in the health sector while reducing medical tourism to countries like India, UAE,Egypt, Europe and the USA.

“To ensure early take-off of these institutions, Mr President approved a take-off grant of N4 Billion each for the Universities of Technology and N5 billion each for the Universities of Health Science from the funding Resources of Tetfund,” he added.

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