BREAKING: Student Loan Application Portal Opens May 24

The Federal Government, through the Nigerian Education Loan Fund, declared on Thursday night that May 24, 2024, would be the official date for “the opening of a portal for student loan applications,” according to a statement signed by Nasir Ayitogo, the Fund’s communications head.

Ayitogo stated in a statement that the opening of the application portal is a key milestone in President Bola Tinubu’s aim to “fostering accessible and inclusive education for all Nigerian students.”

Tinubu signed the Access to Higher study Act, 2023, into law on June 12, 2023, allowing impoverished students to obtain interest-free loans to further their study at any Nigerian higher institution.

According to Dele Alake, a member of the then-Presidential Strategy Team, the action fulfilled “one of his campaign promises to liberalise education funding.”

The Act, also known as the Students Loan Law, established the Nigerian Education Loan Fund, which handles all loan requests, grants, payout, and recovery.

Although the government first claimed that the scheme would debut in September, it was delayed many times, resulting in an indefinite postponement in early March.

The Presidency attributed the delay to Tinubu’s request to expand the initiative to include loans for vocational training.

On January 22, after receiving a briefing from the NELFUND team led by Minister of State for Education Dr Yusuf Sununu, the President authorized the Fund to provide interest-free loans to Nigerian students pursuing skill-development programs.

Tinubu justified his decision on the need for the system to accommodate those who do not choose to pursue a university education, stating that skill acquisition is just as important as getting undergraduate and graduate academic credentials.

“This is not an exclusive programme. It is catering to all of our young people. Young Nigerians are gifted in different areas.

“This is not only for those who want to be doctors, lawyers, and accountants. It is also for those who aspire to use their skilled and trained hands to build our nation.

“In accordance with this, I have instructed NELFUND to explore all opportunities to inculcate skill-development programmes because not everybody wants to go through a full university education,” he had said.

Through the portal, students can now access loans to pursue their academic aspirations without financial constraints.

The portal, according to the statement, provides a user-friendly interface for students to submit their loan applications conveniently.

“We encourage all eligible students to take advantage of this opportunity to invest in their future and contribute to the growth and development of our nation.

“Students can access the portal on to begin application,” the statement said.

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