TETFund partners Pan African University on African union agenda

The Executive Secretary of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund, Arc. Sonny Echono has said that the fund is ready to work with Pan African University to push the African Union (AU) agenda and that of the university forward.

He spoke in Abuja when he received a delegation from the African Union Commission for Education led by Professor Mohammed Belhocine, the Commissioner for Education who came on a courtesy visit.

Arc. Echono said that the Federal Government has been working to promote technology, adding that the country was in the process of establishing a national institute in Abuja.

Speaking on the request for the construction of more classrooms and procurement of laboratory equipment for the Pan African University at the University of Ibadan, Architect Echono gave assurance that the request would be attended to.

“I am aware because I have had a different brief on the subject. The relationship at the University of Ibadan and the sequencing of your request. But I can assure you that as soon as we get the request, having done the most important thing of starting, we should be able to build on that and also forge the right partnership that will encourage or enable us to push the agenda of the African Union and indeed the institution forward.”

Speaking earlier, Prof Mohammed Belhocine said the Pan African University needs some assistance from the TETfund in terms of more classrooms, laboratory equipment and other areas.

He commended the work TETFund has done for the Commission earlier in March, the building housing the Pan African University at the University of Ibadan was commissioned saying, “that would not have been possible without your support.”

“We are very grateful for that. We are sure that it will create the better working conditions for our Pan African University and Nigeria has been one of the advocates for the creation of this university which is now 10 years in existence,” Prof. Belhocine said.

“There are four institutes in Africa which we are operating. One in West Africa in Ibadan, another in East Africa is in Nairobi, and the other one in North Africa is in Algeria. We have one also which deals with governance and humanities, and social science in Yaoundé, Cameroon Central Africa.

“And we are yet to launch the last one which is the space sciences in South Africa. Some discussion about privileges and immunities and we hope we will submit it soon as the 5th institute.”

Prof Belhocine disclosed that at a meeting with the Minister of Education, it was agreed that either the Ministry or TETfund should write a letter to the University of Ibadan.

“We held yesterday a meeting with the Minister of Education and we discussed with responsible people over there. And Mr Buhari was with us yesterday. And it was agreed that Tetfund or the Ministry of Education will write a letter to the University of Ibadan because the request of PAULESI comes through the University of Ibadan. Sometimes, the management university of Ibadan is reluctant to send a request which is not related to their own interests if I may say. So our request is stalled there,” he said.

He explained that the Pan African university is very important noting that it brings young Africans together.

“So far thanks to the foreign institutes that are already operating. We were able to train more than 1,500 masters in different areas of focus. And more than 400 PhDs were trained. And these people come from 50 nationalities.”


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TETFund partners Pan African University on African union agenda

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