Nigeria

Federal government earmarks N2 billion to boost agric-business in FUNAAB

Determined to boost agricultural development in the country, the Federal Government has allocated over N2billion to the Federal University of Agriculture Abeokuta (FUNAAB).

Executive Secretary, Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), Dr. Abdullahi Baffa, who made this known while commissioning multiple projects at the institution on the occasion of its 30th anniversary, said the intervention was targeted at making FUNAAB a world class agricultural training institution.

He lamented that FUNAAB had lagged behind in terms of infrastructural development following its inability to access over N2billion allocated to the institution since 2013 in view of its internal crisis which had already been brought under control.

Baffa said: “I have been to this campus several times in the past to hold meetings or solve one problem or the other. I must say the university is doing well but one hitch that has been hindering the springing up of more TETFund projects on this campus perhaps is the crisis that engulfed the university for so many years, and that crisis became a huge impediment on the ability of the university to draw down on the allocation given to it by TETFund.

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“At the moment, over N2billion worth of allocation to the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta is lying there at the Fund, waiting for the university to come and access. When you have over N2billion to draw down, if you come and ask for special intervention for anything we will ask what is wrong with you? What is going to happen to that amount of money? So, we have been discussing with the Vice Chancellor and he has promised after extensive discussions on how to overcome the problem and we even agreed on timeline.

“We were very encouraged and happy when the Vice Chancellor called and said those Years 2011 and 2012 projects which TETFund had released money for will be completed and ready for commissioning because completing those projects was the only action that would enable FUNNAB to access and draw the over N2billion lying at TETFund because we operate Performance Index Disbursement (PID).

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“When you perform, you draw down, when you underperform we freeze your allocation until we are convinced that you are able to perform. So, with this commissioning we are happy to say that the Vice Chancellor has started performing, we will start also to disburse and the university will start to build new projects, commission new and bigger projects.”

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