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Education: FG spends N1.338trn on capital expenditure in 4 years — Minister

By Joseph Erunke

ABUJA—THE Federal Government said yesterday it had spent N.338 trillion in capital investment in the education sector in the last four years.

Education Minister Adamu Adamu

It also revealed that its aggregate expenditure in the education sector (public and private) exceeded the much-touted 26 percent of the national budget.

Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, who disclosed these during his valedictory briefing in Abuja yesterday, also said the amount was outside the N25 billion approved for public universities.

He said:  “In spite of the economic downturn, we have done well in terms of investment in capital expenditure.

‘’The UBEC interventions in states have recorded a total of N350 billion, while TETFund and NEEDS Assessment interventions have recorded N857 billion with the main ministry and other agencies recording N86 billion, totalling N1.338 trillion in the last four years.”

Adamu,who said the Buhari administration had laid good foundation for dealing with the challenges posed by out-of-school children phenomenon and the huge number of adult illiterates”, said “If we continue on this path, in the next 10 years, Nigeria’s challenges   in this twin direction would be confined to the dustbin of history.

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“In spite of the economic downturn, we have done well in terms of investment in capital expenditure. The UBEC interventions in states have recorded a total of N350 billion, while TETFund and NEEDS Assessment interventions have recorded N857 billion with the main ministry and other agencies recording N86 billion, totalling N1.338 trillion in the last four years.

“This is aside the N25 billion just approved for public universities. These figures have nothing to do with personnel and overhead cost in the education sector, which are also well over a trillion naira.

“On the basic, secondary and tertiary education, we shall continue on the path of infrastructure and manpower development, increasing carrying capacity and creating unfettered access to all levels of our education for our young people.

“I am convinced that we are where we are in education because we are where we are as a nation. We have done well in education relative to our level of development as a nation.

Shuts varsities, polytechnics, others

“As I speak, over 134 illegal tertiary institutions including universities, polytechnics, colleges of education and specialised institutions have been closed down and some of their operators are currently undergoing prosecution.”

“At the inception of this administration, we inherited the unimplementable agreement between the federal government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities,ASUU whose total value in monetary terms was put at N1.3 trillion, which payment was to be spread over six years.”

Speaking on the incessant disagreement between the government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU which has always resulted in industrial action by the latter,he said the duo were at the moment engaging in negotiations with a view to finding lasting common grounds.

According to him: “During the period under review,the federal government through the instrumentality of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund, TETfund, allocated a total of N727,225,862,128.86 worth of investment in critical areas in our tertiary institutions, especially in physical infrastructure, project maintenance, information and communication technology support, entrepreneurship, library development and special high impact projects.

 

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