The federal government has inaugurated a committee to monitor the disbursement of N200 billion allocated to public owned universities in Nigeria under a recent deal with the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU.
The committee includes representatives of the National Universities Commission, NUC; Tertiary Education Trust Fund, TETfund and members of ASUU.
Others are officials of the federal ministry of education, vice chancellors and technical consultants.
The committee was inaugurated by the secretary to the government, Anyim Pius Anyim, on behalf of President Goodluck Jonathan.
The monitoring committee is led by the supervising minister of education, Nyesom Wike.
Others members are the executive secretary of NUC; Julius Okojie; a former executive secretary of TETfund, Mahmoud Yaqub; director tertiary, federal ministry of education; the Vice chancellors of Bayero university, Kano and University of Ibadan as well as representatives of ASUU and others.
After the inauguration ceremony, members held their first meeting to discuss the logistics and strategies on how the fund would be adequately distributed to public owned universities, based on the submitted needs assessment report on Nigerian universities.
At the meeting, chaired by Wike, it was agreed that the committee would not carry out the implementation of the needs assessment report but would only supervise and thoroughly monitor the disbursement of the fund.
“This newly inaugurated committee will not do the implementation of the needs assessment. We are not giving out contract but we will only go round the universities to check if the allocated fund is utilized appropriately based on the needs assessment report,” the minister said.
Allocation and logistics committees were also set up to fashion out strategies on immediate disbursement of the fund, and to outline other approaches that would facilitate a proper supervision of the projects across the six geo political zones.
“These two sub-committees are being set to enhance the performance and efficiency in our supervision, more so, other teams could be formed across the six geo-political zones to monitor projects in universities across the federation,” Wike stated.
He also stressed: “for record purpose, a university must embark on projects according to the submissions in the needs assessment report. A university should not be in need of a lecture theatre and now build a vice chancellor’s lodge. This would bring issues later.”
The sub-committee members, led by Mahmoud, are expected to submit their report on December 24, to enable disbursement of the fund to universities.
It would be recalled that ASUU and the Nigerian government signed an agreement to begin the implementation of the 2009 agreement which includes the disbursement of the N200bn as the first instalment to be paid before the end of 2013.