The Federal Government says it is working out modalities to begin the disbursement of student loans in September.
David Adejo, permanent secretary at the Federal Ministry of Education, disclosed this while answering questions from journalists in Abuja, on Wednesday.
The PUNCH had reported that President Bola Tinubu on Monday signed the bill to give students access to interest-free loans into law.
According to Adejo, President Tinubu has directed that the first recipients of the loan must be available for the 2023/2024 academic session.
“The act as it is tells us the process, but as I speak with you today, the president has approved the committee made up of the ministries and agencies and their meeting will be coming up on June 20.
“The president has also directed that by September to October of this 2023/2024 academic session, he wants to see recipients of these loans. So, it is a very serious march for us. So between now and then, we have to phantom the process for people to get the loan,” Adejo said
Underscoring the importance of the bill, Adejo said indigent students would have easy access to higher education through interest-free loans from the Nigerian Education Loan Fund.
“Learning from past mistakes, the bank is not going to be the type that will sit down and be collecting application loans,” he said.
It will also perform normal banking functions and make sure loans are given because we had cases of loan recovery in the past,” he added.
Meanwhile, the recently signed student loan act has continued to get support from interested stakeholders.
The latest to applaud the act is the National Association of Nigeria Students. The association praised President Tinubu for its signing while urging him to review the constitution of the special committee that will oversee the new Nigerian Education Loan Fund to include student representatives.
Umar Barambu, NANs president gave the encomiums while leading other leaders on a visit to Tinubu in his office on Tuesday.
Barambu said, “We are here to congratulate you and to thank you for what you have been doing for the country since you assumed responsibility as the president. We want to equally thank you for the Students Loan Bill.”