From Fred Ezeh, Abuja
Tertiaty Education Trust Fund (TETFund) has said with the kind of support from its Board of Trustees (BoT), there was hope research grant to the National Research Fund (NRF) might hit N10 billion in 2022.
Executive Secretary of TETFund, Suleiman Bogoro, said the optimism was hinged on the board’s recent approval of N8.5 billion as 2021 allocation for NRF.
Bogoro said increase in the research grant would open more window of opportunities for students and other beneficiaries to deepen their research with superior results.
The TETFund boss spoke at a virtual meeting on ‘Democratisation of higher education in Nigeria through open access’, co-hosted by TETFund and Training Centre in Communication, Nairobi, as part of activities to mark International Open Access Week.
He made reference to 2019 when the BoT approved N5 billion for NRF, which was later raised to N7.5 billion in 2020 and N8.5 billion in 2021.
“Over the last two and half years now, we have raised funds available for research.
They are two categories; institution based and national research fund,” he said.
He said NRF was one of the major platforms put in place by the Federal Government through TETFund to support the academic community in research to achieve specific objectives, particularly in the area of science, technology and innovation.
While expressing readiness of TETFund to always mainstream open access/science through massive support for research and development, Bogoro said the fund had recently established 12 centres of excellence across the country.
At the webinar, the Technical Adviser to the TETFund’s executive secretary, Popoola Ayodele, called for the decolonisation of education research and technology in Africa.
Director of Distance, Open and e-Learning, National Universities Commission (NUC), Odedina Kayode, lamented the problem of access in Nigerian universities both in terms of materials and admission of students.