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Budget constraints force NITDA to abort scholarship process

Budget constraints force NITDA to abort scholarship process

Mrs. Hadiza Umar

The National Information Technology Development has aborted its 2016/2017 scholarship programme, a process of selecting candidates for specialised training in Information Technology.

A statement by the Head, Corporate Affairs and External Relations, NITDA, Mrs. Hadiza Umar, said the agency was forced to cancel the process because of paucity of funds.

Umar said although the scholarship funding was provided for in the agency’s budget for 2016, it had to cancel the process following the non-release of the funds to the agency.

According to her, a new appropriation was made in the 2017 budget for the programme, which targets specialised training in Information Technology at both the master’s and doctoral degree levels.

She said that a new selection process for the 2017/2018 session would be announced soon and urged the candidates to participate in the new process as they would not be made to go through the process of registration and shortlist.

The NITDA spokesman stated, “The agency has made the appropriation for the scheme in its 2017 budget year. Consequently, a new selection process will be announced soon.

“Management urges all affected (candidates) to participate in the 2017/2018 NITDEF selection process. It also assures all 2016 candidates of not having to go through the regular registration and shortlist process.

“While regretting any inconveniences this may have caused the applicants, the agency assures all candidates of justice, fairness and equity based on competitive merit.

“It is worthy of note that this is not the first time the agency was not able to conclude the NITDEF scholarship process. The same thing happened in the year 2012.”

The NITDA was created in April 2001 to implement the Nigerian Information Technology Policy and coordinate the general IT development in the country.

In line with implementing its mandate, the agency oversees the development and deployment of the IT in the country through human capital development with emphasis on creating and supporting a knowledge-based economy.

It is in line with this that the agency instituted the postgraduate scholarship programme to enable young Nigerians to hone their skills in different fields of IT both in Nigerian universities and other universities across the world.

According to the statement, 80 persons receive the scholarship awards each year. While two persons are selected from each of the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory for the master’s degree award; one person is selected from each of the six geopolitical zones for the PhD award.

Each awardee will receive about N4m each year of the scholarship, it added.

 

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