Nigeria, Australia to sign merit scholarship pact in April 2020
…As 200 recipients to fly out in December
The long-standing friendly relations between Nigeria and Australia are billed to be accorded an official seal in April in Abuja when both countries are expected to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the merit scholarship scheme administered by the Australian Government.
The document is expected to provide a special scholarship package for Nigerian post-graduate students.
The scheme is expected to be implemented this year with the first 200 Nigerian recipients arriving in Australia in December 2020.
It is expected that Nigeria’s education minister, Adamu Adamu, and the Australian high commissioner to Nigeria, Claire Ireland, are billed to meet at a round-table in Abuja to sign the MoU.
A source at the Federal Ministry of Education in Abuja told BusinessDay exclusively that Australia’s educational system is not necessarily identical with Nigeria’s as “the quality of education there is so high that it is a great pleasure to have Nigeria as one of the three commonwealth countries that would benefit from the scheme”.
The source, who craved anonymity, described the scheme as “an evidence of the great outward-looking policy of the Australian Government”.
BusinessDay gathered that aside from technical and cultural cooperation which was the cornerstone for development, there was the need for Australia to extend such gesture to Nigeria. No fewer than 650 Nigerians are already in Australia studying in various disciplines.
The merit scholarship scheme is to promote human resources development, through support for training within Australia for Nigerian students of exceptional academic merit.
In like manner, come 2021, another 250 Nigerians would benefit from the scheme.