Founded on 7th July, 2019 by Arc. Bilal Abdullahi, a graduate of Bayero University Kano. BUKdaily aims to provide Nigerian students with a comprehensive resources encompassing daily news, campus updates and academic updates from Nigeria universities.

Monday, June 26, 2023

Lecturers React to Newly Signed Student Loan Act, Give Suggestions

  Bilal Abdullahi       Monday, June 26, 2023

Student loan

Reactions have been pouring in following President Bola Tinubu's decision to sign the Student Loan Bill into law. Lecturers in tertiary institutions have expressed concerns about the feasibility of loan repayment in a country with high unemployment rates. They believe that the government should have explored alternatives such as grants, bursaries, and book allowances for students instead of burdening them with loans.

The recently signed Student Loan Act, signed by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has sparked a wide range of reactions from various stakeholders, including students, parents, lecturers, and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU). On Monday, June 12, President Tinubu signed the Student Loan Bill into law, aiming to assist financially disadvantaged students in their pursuit of higher education.

Lecturers across the country were approached by Legit.ng to gather their perspectives on the act. Dr. Abraham Tegbe, a lecturer at the Polytechnic Ibadan, commended President Bola Tinubu for his efforts to support indigent students. However, he expressed discomfort with the stringent loan application process and the repayment terms after completing their studies. Tegbe highlighted the high unemployment rate in the country as a significant obstacle for loan repayment. He suggested that the government should have provided grants, bursaries, and other incentives that do not require repayment.

"I would prefer the government to make grants available, no matter how small, for every student, rather than offering a loan that they might not be able to access," Tegbe stated. He emphasized that in the past, there were bursaries and book allowances provided as grants, which could be a better approach than offering loans.

Wole Balogun, a lecturer at the Federal University Oye-Ekiti, shared similar concerns about loan repayment after graduation. While he appreciated the government's intention to assist financially disadvantaged students, he pointed out the high rate of unemployment in the country as a potential roadblock. Balogun stressed that the students are not guaranteed employment upon completing their studies, which could make loan repayment difficult. He suggested that the government should focus on improving the economy and investing in education to foster job creation alongside providing loans.

A lecturer at Nnamdi Azikiwe University in Anambra state, who preferred to remain anonymous, expressed concerns about the loan repayment and its impact on the students. The lecturer questioned how the government expects students to repay the loan when many university graduates are unemployed. He called for government funding and reforms in the education system, stating that loans are not the solution. The lecturer advised prospective loan takers to carefully review all the conditions before accepting the loan.

"The loan is more or less a Greek gift. By increasing school fees and giving money to interested students to be paid after graduation, where there is no job for them to repay the loan (even without interest), it is a wicked business that will further burden the labor market," the anonymous lecturer remarked.

It is important to note that not all students are eligible to access the student loan, as reported previously by Legit.ng. The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has also expressed concerns about the newly signed Student Loan Act, suggesting that many students may be forced to withdraw from school. ASUU's President, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, called on President Bola Tinubu to convert the loans into grants for disadvantaged students in the country.

As the discussions around the Student Loan Act continue, it remains to be seen how the government will address the concerns raised by lecturers and other stakeholders, and whether alternative measures will be considered. If love this report, share on social media using the buttons below. 


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