The Federal Ministry of Education and 21 agencies under it are to spend about N1.4bn on foreign and local trips in 2014, The PUNCH findings have shown.
This is apart from the N526.8m budgeted for the office of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, which has its secretariat in Paris, France.
Top on the list are the National Universities Commission with N201m; National Board for Technical Education, N45.9m; National Teachers Institute, N29.4m; National Open University of Nigeria, N79.5m; National Commission for Colleges of Education, N18,9m; and the Nigeria Institute for Education Planners and Administration, N25m.
Others are the National Business and Technical Education Board, N71m; National Examination Council, N55.5m; National Library of Nigeria, N46m; Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, N13.5m; while the international and local units of the West African Examination Council are to spend N7.4m and N4.2m respectively.
Also on the list are the National Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education, N13.2m; Nomadic Education Commission, N10.7m; Nigerian Education Research and Development Council, N43m; Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria, N22.4m and Computers Registration Council of Nigeria, N4.3m.
Others are the National Mathematical Centre, N2.4m; French Language Village, Badagry, N8m; Arabic Language Village, N1.5m and the Librarians Council of Nigeria, N9, 646,706.
The NMC also has N509, 216 for aircraft maintenance and another N293,974 for fuelling.
The same agency has N850, 280 for sea boat and fuelling, N465,522 for railway equipment and N271,784 for cooking gas and fuel.
The National Mathematical Centre, Abuja came into being on January 1, 1988 as an Inter-University Centre for Mathematical Sciences, although the Decree No 40 giving it a legal existence was not promulgated until December 12, 1989. It now operates under the National Mathematical Centre Act 2004 CAP. N58.
The Centre began operations at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka in 1988, but moved to the Federal Capital, Abuja in July 1989.
The ministry also plans to spend N1bn on capacity building for teachers and monitoring of activities in the 104 federal unity colleges.
It will also expend N60m on training of the bursars of the colleges and another N15m on training of facilitators that will take primary school pupils in reading.
Thirty-five procurement officers at the ministry, five officers on database are also to receive specialised capacity building, which will cost about N17m.
The ministry also plans to spend N30m to audit the accounts of the FUCs and N6m for principals and vice-principals (academics) on supervision delivery.
The ministry is to spend about N1m on the training of teachers of gifted children in the six geopolitical zones.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Education, Nyesom Wike, has explained that a $180m credit from the World Bank would be for the procurement and installation of science and technology equipment in the sector.
The Minister stated last Monday in Abuja while receiving the report of the bank’s assisted STEP B project.
He noted that through the programme, the government had refurbished 622 science laboratories across federal universities, polytechnics, colleges of education and unity colleges.
A statement by the minister’s Special Assistant (Media), Mr. Simeon Nwakaudu, said the STEP B project had helped in developing education infrastructure in the country.
According to Wike, the implementation of the STEP B project has also helped in the acquisition of Internet and ICT facilities for e-learning, e-examination and video conferencing in the nation’s schools.
Wike said, “The state of the art equipment procured across most of the institutions made it possible for staff and students to conduct quality research in many critical areas as well as regular practical activities during teaching and learning.”