The fund is meant to further help address regional challenges, strengthen capacities, quality trainings and applied research which the institutions were shortlisted by the World Bank to achieve.
Executive Secretary, Nigeria University Commission, NUC, Prof. Julius Okojie, stated this yesterday in Abuja at the opening ceremony of the post effectiveness workshop for all stakeholders in ACE. Some beneficiaries are Ahmadu Bello University, University of Port- Harcourt, Redeemers University, Bayero University, Benue State University, and University of Benin.
He said the project would also help in the area of capacity building, adding, “The project was also put together, primarily, to build the capacity of all stakeholders to ensure they understand their roles and responsibilities, so that the above-stated objectives can be achieved.” Okojie also assured that emphasis would be placed on financial management and audit processes, procurements among others in the project.
He argued that the ACE project had capacity to transform the economic landscape of the sub-region only if governments in the region would look inwards and come up with innovations that could address common problems. He however charged the beneficiaries to use the funds for the purpose it is meant for.
The World Bank-ACE team leader, Dr. Tunde Adekola, described the project as a game changer for education system in the country. He noted that about 60 universities on various continents applied for ACE project, whereby 19 centres of Excellence emerged from West and Central Africa. Adekola charged all beneficiaries to brace up toward applied research, which he said would boost capacity-building in the country.