Governor Simon Bako Lalong has visited the new Executive Secretary of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TetFund) Arch. Sunny Echono in Abuja with an assurance that the Plateau State Government will continue to engage the Fund in addressing critical challenges of educational institutions in the State.
Lolong who was at the TetFund to formally congratulate Arch. Echono over his new appointment, said he was not surprised by his appointment having done excellently well as the Federal Ministry of Education where he retired as Permanent Secretary.
He recalled the wonderful relationship existing between Plateau State and TetFund where the Fund carried out major interventions at the Plateau State University Bokkos, Plateau Polytechnic, College of Education Gindiri as well as Federal Institutions such as the University of Jos, Federal College of Education Pankshin among others.
According to the Governor, he was optimistic that the new ES will carry on with the good works of his predecessor Prof. Elias Bogoro who did a lot to improve the standard of infrastructure in many State and Federal Tertiary institutions in the country particularly in Plateau State and the North.
He called on Arch. Echono to be focused and ignore distractions from some groups and individuals who are calling for the scrapping of TetFund, saying such calls are unreasonable and uncalled for, giving the tremendous work the Fund has done in changing the face of education in the country.
Lalong assured him that as Chairman of Northern Governors Forum, he will work with his colleagues to ensure that the Fund does not only achieve its objectives across the nation, but get quality interventions in the North which is lagging behind educationally.
Responding, Arch. Echono said he was delighted to receive Governor Lalong who is the Chairman of the Northern Governors Forum and Governor of the State where he spent his early school and working life and still considers it his first home.
He said he has received a lot of support from Governor Lalong over time and is happy that such collaboration will continue as he carries out his new assignment.
While assuring the Governor of the continues intervention of TetFund, Echono said the Fund is moving into other areas of intervention outside infrastructure by devoting resources to content development and supporting entrepreneurship education, as well as equipping education students with practical skills and knowledge to perform better.
He disclosed that President Buhari has already approved upward review of education tax from 2 to 2.5 percent which will enable the Fund cope with increasing demands by the old and new Tertiary institutions that are being established across the country.
Echono was also full of praise to Governor Lalong for his pursuit for peace and development which has restored Plateau to its pride of place as the Home of Peace and Tourism.
Dr. Makut Simon Macham
Director of Press and Public Affairs to the Governor of Plateau State.
21st April 2022.