The Tertiary Education Trust Fund has promised ensure that intervention to the beneficiary higher institutions increased by 50 per cent next year and 100 per cent in two years, adding that it was targeting more than N500bn education tax collection by 2023.
It added that the Federal Government had injected over N2.5tn in the development of infrastructure and staff development in public universities, polytechnics and colleges of education in Nigeria in the last 10 years.
The Chairman, Board of Trustees of TETFund, Kashim Ibrahim-Imam, made these known on Thursday at the third edition of the Tax Payers Forum in Lagos, with the theme, ‘TETFUND Intervention: Catalyst for transforming tertiary education in Nigeria.’
The event, in which the Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, was represented by his Deputy, Olufemi Hamzat, as guest of honour, was attended by captains of industries, academia and other stakeholders.
The governor insisted that funding for the education sector must be prioritised, adding that TETFund was established as a child of necessity to intervene in the ailing university system and that universities in Nigeria would have been worse than the current situation without TETFund.
However, Ibrahim-Imam said for 2021 alone, TETFund budgeted N300bn to over 226 higher institutions across the country in 2021.
According to him, the agency budgeted N120bn to education in 2020, but was increased to N300bn in 2021.
He tasked the Federal Inland Revenue Service on increasing the education tax collection to N500bn in the next two years.
Ibrahim-Imam said more than N30bn was set aside for academic staff training in the various institutions across the country.
He said in response to the challenges of acute shortage of hostels in universities in the country, the BoT of TETfund had approved the construction of 160,000 additional bed spaces in institutions across the country.
The Executive Secretary of TETFund, Prof. Suleiman Bogoro, in his welcome address, said the Tax Payers Forum served as the platform to honour and identify individuals and companies making tremendous contributions to education.
Bogoro said the tax, over the years, was channeled into different activities and areas in line with the mandate of the fund as enshrined in its establishment Act.