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Senate seeks explanation from education minister for stranded Nigerian students overseas

The Senate on Tuesday urged the Federal Government to impose sanctions on officials responsible for the suffering of Nigerian students abroad.

The Senate has summoned the Minister of Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman, and the leadership of the Federal Scholarship Board to address the delays in paying outstanding grants to these students.

The upper legislative chamber also requested that Prof. Mamman provide a detailed report on the status of all Nigerian students under international scholarship programs, including a breakdown of their unpaid entitlements.

The resolution followed a motion of urgent importance moved by Senator Saliu Mustapha, representing Kwara Central Senatorial District.

He stated, “These scholarships are part of a broader initiative to promote specialized education through partnerships with foreign institutions, facilitated by entities such as the Federal Scholarship Board under the Federal Ministry of Education.”

“There are reports of Nigerian students facing hardships in Algeria, China, Morocco, Russia, and the United Kingdom due to non-payment of tuition and living stipends, leading to negative media coverage and national embarrassment.

“The recurrence of these issues suggests systemic failures, despite previous interventions by this distinguished chamber to prevent such situations,” he added.

“The Federal Government’s failure to meet its financial commitments under these international agreements for over 10 months jeopardizes the welfare and academic progress of the affected students.

“The failure to fulfill these obligations not only undermines our national reputation but also poses significant diplomatic concerns and risks, pushing our students towards unlawful activities to sustain their livelihood abroad.”

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