Tinubu signs Student Loans Bill into law

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President Bola Tinubu has signed the Student Loans Re-enactment Bill into law.

Signing the bill into an act on Wednesday at the State House, President Tinubu expressed his determination to ensure that education is given the appropriate attention and enhance skills development programmes in the country.

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The President assured that no Nigerian student will drop out of college but rather will be supported with opportunities to acquire quality education.

The Nigerian Leader reassured that with the approved best standard of accessing the student loans scheme every Nigerian citizen is eligible to apply.

“I have just signed a bill proclaiming the student loan effectively. First of all, I must thank members of the National Assembly for their expeditious handling of this bill considering the children of Nigeria that education is the tool to fight against poverty effectively.

“We are determined to ensure that education is given the proper attention necessary for the country including skills development programmes. This is to ensure that no one, no matter how poor their background is, is excluded from quality education and opportunity to build their future.

“We are here because we are all educated and were helped. In the past, we have seen a lot of our children drop out of college and give up the opportunity. That is no more, the standard and the control is there for you to apply no matter who you are as long as you are a Nigerian citizen.

 Present at the signing of the bill were; the  Senate President, Godswill Akpabio, the Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila, Deputy Senate President, Jibrin Barau, Ministers of Education and other key stakeholders in the Nigerian Education sector.

The new legislation repeals the previous Students Loans (Access to Higher Education) Act of 2023 and re-enacts the Student Loans (Access to Higher Education) Bill from 2004.

The executive bill establishes the Nigerian Education Loan Fund as a corporate body tasked with receiving, managing and investing funds to provide loans to Nigerians pursuing higher education, vocational training and skills acquisition programs.

The Student Loan (Access to Higher Education) Act 2023 was signed into law by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR on 12th June 2023. The Act established the Nigerian Education Loan Fund (NELFUND) to supervise, coordinate, administer and monitor the management of student loans in Nigeria.

The Students Loans (Access to Higher Education) (Repeal and Re[1]Enactment) Bill 2024 resolves the challenges on the establishment of the Nigeria Education Loan Fund (NELFUND) as a corporate body that can sue and be sued in its name and has the power to acquire, hold, and dispose of movable and immovable property for its functions.

This ensures that the Fund can legally enter contracts, including loan agreements and may also initiate action to ensure repayment by beneficiaries.

The new law also empowers the Fund to Provide loans to qualified Nigerians for tuition, fees, charges, and upkeep during their studies in approved tertiary education institutions and vocational and skills acquisition institutions in Nigeria.

It further seeks to build, operate, and maintain a diversified pool of funds to provide loans to qualified applicants and ensure access to higher education, vocational training, and skills acquisition.

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