No fewer than 77 Sokoto indigenes under the state government scholarship successfully graduated with first class degrees in Indian tertiary institutions.
Muhammad Bello, Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto, disclosed this in a statement in Sokoto on Saturday.
Mr Bello said one of the graduates, Hassan Usman from Kofa village in Binji Local Government Area, became the recipient of the first African silver medal for outstanding performance in Bio Medical Engineering.
“All the students were products of a scholarship scheme bankrolled by the state government, which has expended the sum of N14 billion between 2016 and 2022 on the training of 46,000 indigenous students as medical doctors, engineers and other professionals.
“The graduates were presented to Gov. Tambuwal, on Friday in Sokoto by the Permanent Secretary in the state scholarship board, Alhaji Bello Isah,” he said.
He said Mr Tambuwal, while receiving the graduates, directed the state’s Head of Service to ensure that all the medical graduates were immediately employed after completing their mandatory youths service scheme.
He added that Mr Tambuwal expressed his delight with their academic feats, and awarded the silver medalist a scholarship to pursue his masters degree and PhD.
Mr Bello said the government’s huge investment on medical students was aimed at addressing the lack of adequate manpower in the state’s health sector.
“We know our challenges. We do not have adequate medical manpower.
“This is the reason why we came up with this programme so that we can have enough manpower for our people, especially now that we are building more hospitals in the state,” the governor said.
Earlier the Permanent Secretary In the state scholarship board, explained that 1,121 students were trained in medicine, engineering and other paramedic courses from universities in India, Sudan, Ukraine and Ghana.
He added that 15,000 of those sponsored were graduates of sciences and social sciences related courses from different universities in Nigeria, which among them were 300 lawyers.
Mr Isah further said that an additional 30,000 are currently being sponsored to study various courses in Nigeria.