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Interswitch Group Offers Free Tutorials to UTME Candidates

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interswitch limited

As part of efforts to promote quality education in Nigeria, Interswitch Group, has pledged its readiness to offer free tutorial classes to prospective and existing candidates for the forthcoming UTME conducted by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB).

This is coming on the heels of the extension of sale of forms for the 2021 registration to May 29, 2021.

The tutorials will commence a few weeks before the examination and is exclusive to candidates who register on Interswitch enabled platforms such as Quickteller Mobile App/Web, Quickteller Paypoint (Agents) and Interswitch WebPAY on JAMB’s website. The tutorials will be held virtually across the country.

The Group Head, Quickteller Marketing, Olawale Akanbi, said it will be holding 84 virtual classes during the course of the tutorials which will cover 10 subjects: Mathematics, English Language, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Literature-in-English, Government, Commerce, Economics, and Accounting.

According to him, “we are committed to strengthening and supporting the community through education; hence, we have pledged to offer free tutorials to prospective and existing JAMB/UTME candidates. The objective of the tutorials is to equip the students and help them prepare better for the desired future.”

JAMB had earlier slated May 15, 2021 for the deadline of the 2021 JAMB registration before it was extended to May 29, 2021.

Akanbi said the deadline extension, will give parents and guardians of prospective candidates intending to register for the 2021 UTME the opportunity to obtain their e-PINs from enabled Interswitch platforms such as Quickteller Mobile App/Web, Quickteller Paypoint (agents) and Interswitch WebPAY on JAMB’s website and through payment using Interswitch paydirect at any bank branch nationwide.

“The cost of registration is N3,500 as directed by the federal government since 2018. However, each candidate will be required to also pay an additional N500 for a study pack to be provided by CBT centres at the point of registration. Consequently, every prospective candidate will pay a total of N4,000.

“The 2021 JAMB/UTME examination will now commence on June 19 till July 3.”

Education

Southern States Skeptical as NELFund Disburses First Loans

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University - Investors King

The National Education Loan Fund (NELFund) officially launched on Wednesday, a significant step in providing financial aid to students across Nigeria.

However, the initiative faces skepticism, particularly from the southern states.

President Bola Tinubu inaugurated the first tranche of funds, amounting to N32 billion, aimed at empowering Nigerian youth and breaking financial barriers to education.

The NELFund portal has registered 164,000 students, with 103,000 applying for loans.

Despite the promising start, many southern states remain doubtful about the fund’s implementation.

Akintunde Sawyerr, NELFund’s Managing Director, acknowledged these concerns, citing data challenges in verifying indigent applicants as a primary hurdle.

Sawyerr highlighted the lack of comprehensive data needed for credit assessments. The fund relies on bank verification numbers (BVN), National Identification Numbers (NIN), and educational institution data to determine eligibility.

More applications have been received from northern states, where students have shown greater confidence in the fund.

Sawyerr pointed out that skepticism in the south might stem from uncertainty about the program’s viability.

NELFund offers two types of loans: educational fees paid directly to institutions and upkeep loans for student stipends.

The focus is currently on government-owned institutions to ensure a smooth rollout.

President Tinubu emphasized education as a critical tool against poverty and insecurity, linking the nation’s challenges to a lack of educational opportunities.

He reaffirmed his commitment to inclusive growth through education.

As NELFund continues its rollout, efforts to address data issues and regional skepticism will be crucial. By building trust and ensuring transparency, the program aims to support more students nationwide and foster a fairer society.

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Education

Federal Government Shortlists 5,000 for Oil and Gas Sector Overseas Scholarships

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University - Investors King

The Federal Government has shortlisted 5,000 candidates for its prestigious overseas scholarships.

The announcement was made through the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF) in Abuja.

Bolanle Agboola, the Head of the Overseas Scholarship Scheme at PTDF, disclosed that the selection process for the 2024 scholarships had reached its final stage.

She revealed that the shortlisted candidates had participated in rigorous examinations across the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria.

“The purpose of this initiative is to empower Nigerians with high-tech skills required in the oil and gas industry,” Agboola stated. “The selection process was conducted simultaneously in various universities across the country.”

Highlighting the importance of the scholarships, Agboola emphasized the need for Nigeria to indigenize its oil and gas sector.

“Our target is to select the best candidates for the overseas scholarships,” she said. “This initiative aligns with the government’s goal of building local capacity in the oil and gas industry.”

When asked about the number of participants to be selected, Agboola explained that each state of the federation would receive an equal allocation of successful candidates based on the budget for the year.

However, she refrained from disclosing the exact budget allocated for the scholarship scheme.

Agboola defended the decision to send scholars abroad, citing the high-tech nature of the oil and gas industry and the need for hands-on experience with cutting-edge equipment and technology.

She also mentioned PTDF’s in-country scholarship program, where participants are trained in Nigeria.

The overseas scholarships will be offered in various universities in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Malaysia, providing Nigerian scholars with access to world-class education and training in the oil and gas sector.

With this initiative, the Federal Government aims to equip Nigerian professionals with the expertise needed to drive innovation and development in the nation’s vital oil and gas industry, ensuring its sustainability and competitiveness on the global stage.

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Education

JAMB Releases 36,540 Withheld UTME Results, Dismisses Cyber Breach Claims

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The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has quelled concerns over the integrity of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) results by releasing an additional 36,540 previously withheld scores.

This move follows earlier revelations of withheld results and assertions of a cyber security breach.

Fabian Benjamin, the spokesperson for JAMB, confirmed the release of these results in a statement issued late Tuesday in Abuja.

This latest batch of released scores, when combined with the 531 previously unveiled, brings the total number of results made public to 1,879,437.

Benjamin took the opportunity to address circulating rumors regarding the security of the UTME results.

He categorically dismissed claims of a cyber security breach, saying that the examination outcomes remain intact and securely stored.

He stressed that the results are not stored in any cloud system and thus cannot be compromised by external entities.

At the time of the UTME release, JAMB had disclosed that certain results were withheld pending further investigation.

Subsequently, 531 of these results were recently unveiled with the remainder still under scrutiny.

Benjamin explained that any candidates implicated in examination malpractice are undergoing thorough investigation.

The examination board intends to meticulously review footage from CCTV cameras installed across all accredited centers to ascertain each candidate’s involvement.

Benjamin urged the public to remain vigilant against misinformation originating from sources not affiliated with JAMB.

He attributed the discrepancies in minimum admissible scores to variations among tertiary institutions. Some institutions, he noted, proposed lower minimum scores than others, resulting in varying benchmarks.

Benjamin clarified that these benchmarks are determined collectively by all Heads of Institutions during the annual Policy Meeting on Admissions, ensuring uniformity across the country.

Also, Benjamin cautioned religious organizations against overstepping their designated roles.

He warned against the dissemination of false information to governmental bodies for personal gain.

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