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Nigerian Government Approves N5.1bn for TETFund Grant

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The Nigerian Federal Government has approved the disbursement of N5.1 billion for the 2023 Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) National Research Fund Grant Cycle. Announced by the Minister of Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman, this initiative marks a substantial investment in the nation’s research capabilities.

From a pool of 4,287 Concept Notes, the TETFund National Research Fund Screening and Monitoring Committee has selected 185 research proposals for funding. These projects span various fields, with Science, Engineering, Technology, and Innovation (SETI) allocated N3.78 billion, Humanities and Social Science (HSS) receiving N759 million, and Cross-Cutting (CC) granted N583 million. The individual grants for these initiatives range from N8 million to over N46 million.

Key projects in the SETI category include developing a national water quality assurance plan, breeding maize lines for better yield and pest resistance, inventing an advanced cooling system for fruit preservation, and designing electric vehicles with unique tracking features.

In the Cross-Cutting category, innovative projects such as using scrap tires and plastic waste for energy storage systems and developing technologies for the Oil and Gas Industry are set to be funded.

The Humanities and Social Science sector will see projects focusing on digital financial inclusion for rural households, enhancing library access for students with vision impairments, and strategies for addressing post-traumatic stress disorder in Nigerian Army personnel.

This funding, as Prof. Mamman highlighted, is aimed at advancing research in areas crucial for Nigeria’s economy and citizen welfare, including power, health, security, and agriculture. While this move is commendable, one key issue is the lack of continuity and consistency in government initiatives. Often, projects are launched with much fanfare but suffer from inadequate follow-through or misappropriation of funds. There is, thus, a need for transparent and accountable management to ensure that these funds are used effectively and for their intended purposes.

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