Tertiary Education Trust Fund (Tetfund) as part of its strategic push to reshape medical research in Nigerian universities will fund Six colleges of medicine across Nigeria to host Medical Simulation, Research and Training Facilities.
The facilities, would aid the setting up of Molecular Science Laboratories with capacity for testing and diagnosing COVID-19, Lassa fever, and other related viral diseases.
Ngoba Briggs, director of public affairs, Tetfund said, the education minister, Adamu Adamu, had directed Suleiman Bogoro, Tetfund executive secretary to select a university in each of the six geo-political zones, where the projects would be executed.
According to Briggs, Adamu Adamu had emphasised that besides ongoing research work in response to COVID-19 and similar diseases through the Tetfund National Research Fund (NRF), the Research Community of the ministry should undertake any other sundry contributions.
The establishment of the facilities is said to have gotten the nod of President Muhammadu Buhari which had mandated Tetfund to establish 12 Medical Centers of Excellence to be hosted by first, second and third generation universities.
Briggs said the centres of excellence, according to the directive, should be distributed in such a way that two must be sited in each geo-political zone.
Buhari Mikailu, director, Physical Infrastructure Development, Tetfund said additional centers of excellence would be sited in state universities, polytechnics, and colleges of education in “subsequent years”.
Mikailu said areas of focus of the centers of excellence, in line with contemporary practice and technologies, were mainly in science-based disciplines.
He said the approval was initiated through the recommendation of the fund’s Board of Trustees, BOT, and endorsement of Adamu Adamu.
He said the purpose was to signify a major paradigm shift in research and excellence in the universities.
Meanwhile, Suleiman Bogoro, executive secretary, Tertiary Education Trust Fund (Tetfund) has urged Nigerian students and lecturers to make the most of the closure of universities by engaging in research.
Bogoro said that the nation was counting on local ’content inventions and ideas to among other things, improve businesses, technologies, governance and create jobs.
“Research on problem solving suitable for our Nigerian content and environmental growth are the best option for industrial development,” he said.
It also said that students should read ahead as they prepare for a fresh start in school, as soon as the Coronavirus pandemic was over.
Tetfund is responsible for making intervention in public Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria through funding and effective project management.