National Assembly Passes Student Loan Bill
Nigerian lawmakers has passed the education bill that enable students to access and apply for loans The Students Loan Bill, which would give students at higher education institutions better access to financial aid, has been approved by both houses of the National Assembly. A Bill for an Act to Provide for Easy Access to Higher Education for Nigerians Through Interest-Free Loans from the Nigerian Education Bank Established in This Act with a View to Providing Education for All Nigerians and for Other Purposes Connected Thereto is the bill sponsored by Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila. The bill calls for the creation of the Nigerian Education Bank, which will be given the authority to oversee, coordinate, manage, and keep an eye on the management of student loans in Nigeria. It will also have the authority to receive applications for student loans from applicants through Nigerian higher education institutions and to screen those applications to make sure they meet all requirements for the Act’s grant of such loans. Additionally, the bank will have the authority to approve and disburse loans to qualified applicants; control, monitor, and coordinate the students’ loan account or fund; ensure compliance with regard to disbursement; and monitor grantees’ academic records to gather data on their year of graduation, time spent performing national service, and employment to ensure that they begin repayment of their loans. The bill also states that, despite anything to the contrary contained in other enactments, all Nigerian students pursuing higher education in any public institution of higher learning shall have an equal right to access the loan under this Act, free from any type of discrimination based on gender, religion, tribe, position, or disability. The bill was approved by the House of Representatives earlier this year and sent to the Senate for consideration. A clean copy will be created and given to President Muhammadu Buhari for approval with the Senate’s approval. Nigerian students would be able to acquire the loans after it became legislation.