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New requirements for obtaining student loans in Nigeria addresses unemployment concerns



Nigerian student loans: addresses unemployment

The Nigerian government has approved new guidelines for accessing student loans under the Students Loans (Access to Higher Education) Act, 2024.

The act, aimed at making higher education more accessible, introduces several key changes to the application and repayment process.

The Students Loans Act replaces the Nigerian Education Bank Act and establishes a zero-interest loan system for eligible Nigerian students attending public tertiary institutions.

These loans will cover institutional charges and provide living expenses monthly.

Here are the essential details:

1. Eligibility and Application Process:

  • Students admitted to public Nigerian universities, polytechnics, colleges of education, or vocational schools can apply for the loan. Proof of admission must include the student’s name, date of birth, admission details, JAMB number, matriculation number, and BVN.
  • Direct Entry students must have a JAMB number to qualify.
  • All full-time students are eligible, but only those who apply will receive the loan.
  • Applications are processed online, with required personal details such as the institution’s name, admission number, JAMB number, date of birth, NIN, and BVN.
  • NELFUND, the body responsible for administering the loans, will disburse funds within 30 days of approving applications.

2. Loan Amount and Disbursement:

  • The loan amount depends on the institutional charges of each institution and includes funds for upkeep if needed.
  • Institutional charges are remitted directly to the institutions while living expenses are paid to the students in monthly installments.

3. Zero-Interest Policy:

  • The loan is provided at zero interest, making it a more affordable option for students.

4. Repayment Terms:

  • Repayment begins two years after completing the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) program.

5. Handling Unemployment Post-NYSC:

  • If a beneficiary remains unemployed two years after completing NYSC, they must inform NELFUND by submitting a sworn court affidavit every three months.

This process ensures that NELFUND is aware of the beneficiary’s employment status and can adjust repayment schedules accordingly.

The Nigerian Education Loan Fund (NELFUND) will manage the daily operations of the loan program.

It is expected that these changes will significantly increase access to higher education for many Nigerian students, providing them with the necessary financial support without the burden of interest payments.

As the first phase of the loan scheme rolls out, only students attending federal higher institutions are eligible, with plans to expand to other public tertiary institutions in subsequent phases.

The new guidelines aim to enhance transparency, ease the application process, and ensure that students can focus on their studies without financial stress.

Lawrence is a dynamic digital journalist known for his expertise in creating SEO-focused content that drives business success. Alongside his journalism career, he also serves as an AI tutor, leveraging his knowledge to educate and empower others in the field. Lawrence graduated from Moshood Abiola Polytechnic with an HND in Mass Communication and has had his work referenced in Wikipedia and various online media outlets.