Kano Rep wants GEJ’s scholarship cancelled for causing 'education imbalance' in North ...NUC says award 'merit' based

Chairman of the HoR Committee on Education, Aminu Sulaiman Goro, has asked for the cancelation of President Jonathan's PRESSID, claiming it has sidelined northerners and caused “education imbalance and monumental abuse.”

Hon Aminu Sulaiman Goro

A Federal lawmaker from Kano state, Aminu Sulaiman Goro, has asked the Federal government to stop the 2015/2016 Presidential Special Scholarships for Innovation and Development (PRESSID).

Hon. Goro, who spoke as the Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Education during a Thursday meeting with the Chairman of the PRESSID Implementation Committee, Prof. Julius Okojie, said the scheme, which was started in 2012 by President Goodluck Jonathan, favours only a section of the country.

The lawmaker said PRESSID sidelines northerners leading to “education imbalance and monumental abuse.”

It was noted that none of the 104 beneficiaries short-listed for the scholarships this year is came from the North-West, North-East and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) while the North Central received only seven (7) slots.

But Okojie, who is also the Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), explained that the award is meant for First Class graduates, who were under 30 years of age and has been based on merit alone.

“Unless we are saying that the criteria have to change, I will not advise that the programme should be scrapped,” he said.

Okojie promised to take the committee's recommendations to the President.

It will be recalled that, in late 2014, a member of the Scholarship Scheme Implementation Committee, Professor Olurotimi Tayo, the PRESSID scheme was initiated to train ‘a critical mass of people who would be able to innovate and develop’ the nation's economy.

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