From George Onyejiuwa,Owerri
The President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND) to increase research fund under the National Research Fund (NRF) scheme to the tune of N8 billion.
The president gave the directive yesterday at the 33rd Convocation ceremony of the Federal University of Technology Owerri (FUTO).
He also charged the nation’s universities to redesign their curricula and programmes by infusing relevant trainings and vocations that are relevant to solve specific societal problems.
The president who was represented at the event by the Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, noted that the redesigning would enable the nation’s graduates to remain relevant to the economy and competitive in the world.
Buhari who stressed the importance of universities of technology in the country said that they should take the lead in championing research, adding that the Federal Government is committed to promoting researches that are relevant in transforming the nation’s fortunes and boosting national development.
“Our universities parade finest and smartest scholars who can change the narrative and place our country on the front burner of innovators in the global arena and I encourage our scholars to collaborate with research institutes in the country for effective research output,” he said.
The president congratulated the Governing Council, management, staff, and students of FUTO on the approval by the National Universities Commission (NUC) for the establishment of a College of Medicine in the institution even as he congratulated the Vice Chancellor, Prof Nnenna Oti on her emergence as the first female vice chancellor and the 8th substantive vice chancellor of the 41-year-old nation’s premier university of technology and wished her success in her tenure.
Earlier, Prof Oti said that her vision for the institution is to lead specific and technological transformation of the nation through excellence in teaching, research, innovation and community service as well as producing world-class graduates, patents and indigenous solutions to local, national and global problems facing the world.