In fulfilment of a promise he made during his campaign, President Bola Tinubu has signed into law the Student Loan Bill.
According to Daily Trust, Tinubu had during his campaign, in London, promised to give students some loans as part of efforts to develop the education sector and also build the youth capacity.
Femi Gbajabiamila, Chief of Staff to the president; Dele Alake, a member of the President’s Strategic team; Tunde Rahman, spokesman of the president; Abdulaziz Abdulaziz, a presidential spokesman; and the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, David Adejoh, witnessed the signing.
Commenting on the bill, Alake told journalists that the new law is a fulfilment of one of the electoral promises of President Tinubu to liberalise funding of education in the country.
Asked if the new law will not encourage inflation of school fees, Alake said both situations are unrelated, adding that the idea behind the law is to help indigent students to be able to obtain education in the country.
“We are very happy to announce to you that today, just a few minutes ago, the President His Excellency, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, signed into law, the Student Loans Bill and that Student Loans Bill, you all know what it entails, what it connotes the meaning.
“This is the promise made during the presidential campaign by the then candidate, His Excellency, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, that he will bring back the student loans issue to the front burner and today, that promise he made has been kept, he has just signed that bill into law, which henceforth, will allow or enable our indigent students to access federal government loans to fund their educational pursuit or career and this is how it’s done in other developed climes all over the world”, he said.
The bill, which passed second reading at the House of Representatives on May 25, 2023, was sponsored by Gbajabiamila, Speaker of the 9th House of Representatives.
The law makes provision for funds to be domiciled in the Ministry of Education and will only be accessed by indigent students of tertiary institutions.
The law is to provide easy access to higher education for indigent Nigerians through interest-free loans from the Nigerian Education Loan Fund.