Dr Abdullahi Baffa, the Executive Secretary, Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND) has advised tertiary institutions to ensure proper utilisation of research grants from the Fund.
Baffa made the call on Thursday during the inauguration of some TETFUND projects at the Yaba College of Technology, Lagos.
He noted that proper utilisation of the TETFUND research grants would improve the quality of higher education and enhance the training of students in entrepreneurship in the country.
The executive secretary explained that a key mandate of the agency was to support higher institutions by funding essential infrastructure and research.
He suggested that institutions should focus more on research that has to do with equipment fabrication.
“Since many of our institutions have the right students and competent scholars, with this fund coming from the TETFUND, we should intensify on fabrication,’’ Baffa said.
The executive secretary complained that some institutions were not taking advantage of the Fund to develop their facilities.
According to him, there are academic research intervention and academic management intervention, which the TETFUND provides on regular basis.
“We will like to see institutions applying grants they receive on the specific project such funding is granted,’’ he said and commended YABATECH for doing that.
The executive secretary frowned at situations in which universities only display equipment they fabricate instead of putting the products to effective use.
“Many of the equipment in our factories can be fabricated in our institutions which can save the nation foreign exchange being used to import such equipment.
“We should be able to think further on how we can mass produce equipment we fabricate.
“Some of these fabrication are original and unique because they cannot be seen anywhere in the world.
“We should be able to research further and see how we can introduce innovations into our equipment fabrication.’’
Also speaking at the occasion, the Rector of the institution, Dr Margret Ladipo, pleaded for more assistance towards development of the college, especially its Epe campus.
According to her, grant is needed to enable YABATECH increase its carrying capacity and boost student’s admission.
Ladipo also lamented on the issue of flooding in the institution due to the low topography of the college terrain, which made it vulnerable to flooding.
She said flooding had damaged the college serenity and disrupted the community and academic activities.
“We shall greatly appreciate the intervention fund to assist us in solving this problem,’’ she said.