The House of Representatives Committee on Education has implored the Federal Government to pause the 2015/2016 Presidential Special Scholarship due to the innovation and development on ground.
The committee observed that the scheme was majorly supporting some sections of the country and neglecting some others in return.
The Presidential Special Scholarship is awarded to the first class graduates in Nigeria who wish to study abroad. It is not based on federal character, it is merit based. Any Nigerian who earns a first class degree from a Nigerian university and wishes to further his or her studies abroad gets the scholarship.
The legislators led by Aminu Sulaiman (Kano State) made their stance known on Thursday, April 23, 2015 during a meeting with the Chairman of the Implementation Committee, Professor Julius Okojie, in Abuja.
This is the second time the committee is coming up with the suggestion since 2014 after they checked the criteria for the award of the scholarships.
According to Punch, Suleiman claimed that northerners were sidelined in the awards, leading to what he called “education imbalance and monumental abuse.”
Okojie, who is also the Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission, asserted the beneficiaries of the award were considered to further their studies in any of the top 100 universities in the world strictly on merit.
He said, “Unless we are saying that the criteria have to change, I will not advise that the programme should be scrapped.”
He further promised the legislators that he would make the matter on ground known to President Goodluck Jonathan.