Wednesday 10 July 2024

Stop Playing Destructive Politics With Tinubu's Govt Over NELFUND - Osun APC Slams Adeleke

The Osun State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has cautioned the state Governor Ademola Adeleke to desist from playing destructive politics with the Federal Government's National Education Loan Fund (NELFUND) for the  students of tertiary institutions and technical colleges in the state.

It would be recalled that Governor Adeleke on Tuesday while hosting the Managing Director of NELFUND, Mr Akintunde Sawyer, in Osogbo, the state capital, praised the Federal Government for activating the scheme but on the other hand was reported badmouthing it, claiming that the Federal Government should not run the students into eternal debt with the students' loan.

In his response to the development, the Osun State chairman of the APC, Sooko Tajudeen Lawal, in a statement issued by the party's Director of Media and Information, Chief Kola Olabisi, today, pointed out that it was dishonourable for Governor Adeleke to be approbating and reprobating at the same time.

"Governor Adeleke should stop playing dirty politics with the Federal Government students' loan  scheme. He was eulogizing the Federal Government for activating the programme, on one hand; and on the other hand, he was demonizing it and raising needless panic", Lawal fumed.

Lawal, who explained that the students' loan is not a debt trap for students as the Federal Government has streamlined it so that the students can make the best out of it, stated that the beneficiaries are not expected to repay the loan until two years after the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) when they have secured employment. 

In the words of the state chairman of the APC: "No repayment will be pressed if the beneficiaries have not secured employment even after the stipulated two years' post-NYSC timeline. So what is the evil gospel being peddled by Governor Adeleke regarding the loan?

"Why is Governor Adeleke badmouthing the programme? Is it to discourage the students from accessing the package and ease financial burden from their parents and sponsors? That is politics taken too far.

"Governor Adeleke has realized that with the NELFUND, which is earning support and popularity of the  Nigerian student-youths, the APC will gain more acceptance in the state towards the 2026 elections. 

"If not, why is the state government of Osun reportedly trying every means to frustrate the scheme at Osun State Polytechnic, Iree, where Governor Adeleke's lapdog and kinsman from Ede, the controversial Mr Kehinde Alabi, is the Rector?

 "While managements of many tertiary institutions and technical colleges in the state, numbering 13,  have been selected to benefit from the loan scheme, after they have completed data verification of their students, only the data for the students of Osun State Polytechnic, Iree, are yet to be completed, thereby, denying the students the opportunity to partake in the loan scheme.

"The latest development is a confirmation of the sheer administrative and leadership incompetence of Alabi and the height of indecent politics being institutionalized in the polytechnic.

"Adeleke still has room to remedy his integrity by shedding himself of cruel politics he is currently playing with the future of the students of the state owned polytechnic.

 According to the NELFUND Managing Director,  the loan will be applied for every academic session by the students to cover their school fees and upkeep. While the school fees are paid to the beneficiary's school, the monthly feeding allowance is paid directly into each of the  students' bank account.

He stated that the  loan is due for repayment  two years after completion of the NYSC. If the beneficiary is lucky to secure employment two years after the NYSC, just 1O per cent of his or her salary is deducted to repay the loan. In case the student does not secure employment two years after the NYSC, he or she is expected to notify the NELFUND/Federal Government about his/her status. 

"The student continues to do this until an employment is secured. No beneficiary will be put under stress to make repayment when he/she is unable to secure employment", Sawyer explained.

The Osun State APC chairman challenged Adeleke what he meant when he said yesterday that the Federal Government should not entrap the student with the student loan. Was this statement made out of jealousy because it is an APC project or to discourage the indigent Osun State students, who have been at the receiving end of the cut-throat schools' fees at all the state-owned institutions in the state?

"Where is the honour in the devilish admonition of Governor Adeleke when in the last two years of his administration, school fees in all the tertiary institutions in the state have been ungodly increased notwithstanding the economic hardship in the land?

"Why should Governor Adeleke, who has in almost two years in office, failed to give bursary and grants to the students to ease the financial burden on them and their parents, undermine a relief programme initiated by the Federal Government? Is Governor Adeleke a sadist or it is petty politics that is driving him to lose his humanity?", the Osun State APC chairman asked.

*Sooko TAJUDEEN LAWAL,        Chairman, Osun State APC   


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Daniel Adewole Awe Medical Center is a healthcare facility located in Ilesa, Osun State, providing quality primary and secondary healthcare services to the community and its environs. 



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