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Senate Summons Education Minister Over Unpaid Scholarships for Nigerian Students Abroad

Senate Summons Education Minister Over Unpaid Scholarships for Nigerian Students Abroad

On Tuesday, the Senate summoned Education Minister Prof. Tahir Mamman and the Federal Scholarship Board’s leadership to address the delay in disbursing outstanding grants to Nigerian students stranded overseas. The Senate also called for sanctions against officials responsible for the students’ hardships.

The legislative body requested that Prof. Mamman deliver a comprehensive report detailing the status of all Nigerian students in international scholarship programs, including a breakdown of their unpaid entitlements.

Senate President Godswill Akpabio was urged to conduct a thorough investigation into the issue and implement prompt corrective measures. This resolution came after a motion of urgent public importance was presented by Kwara Central Senator Salihu Mustapha.

Mustapha highlighted that these scholarships are part of a larger initiative to enhance specialized education through international partnerships, facilitated by the Federal Scholarship Board under the Ministry of Education. This initiative aligns with the government’s commitments under Bilateral Education Agreements and Multilateral Agreements with the Commonwealth and other international partners.

He noted that Nigerian students in countries like Algeria, China, Morocco, Russia, and the United Kingdom are experiencing significant difficulties due to unpaid tuition and living stipends, resulting in negative media attention and national embarrassment. The recurring nature of these issues indicates systemic failures, despite previous interventions by the Senate.

The lawmaker warned that the Federal Government’s ten-month delay in meeting its financial obligations jeopardizes the students’ welfare and academic progress. This neglect not only harms Nigeria’s reputation but also raises serious diplomatic concerns and may force students into illegal activities to survive abroad.

This Article is Fact-Checked. See Policy.

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