UNIJOS VC approves low-interest loan for staff to acquire HP Laptops

About 6 months ago I commented on a forum thread started by Dr Aminu Ibrahim on the preference for notebooks rather than desktops in addressing the high costs that universities face in the provision of alternate energy infrastructure required to keep their networks running.

In my post I referred to the Unijos Laptop Scheme, an initiative by the University, Datasphir Solutions and HP to provide laptops for staff at discounted rates with payments spread over a period to remove barriers to ownership. At the time, the scheme was structured so that the staff purchasing the laptop entered into an agreement directly with the bank providing the loan. My argument was that although this was a welcome development and some savings and convenience had been achieved, more was possible if the University would leverage it's clout with it's bankers and assume the responsibility of the borrower.

I have since learnt that there are guidelines that make this difficult to actualise but the fantastic news out of Jos is that the current Unijos Vice Chancellor, Prof. S.G Tyoden has actually done even better and provided funds out of the University's kitty. The funds provided by the University of Jos attract a very low interest rate to cater for administration and works out to be about a tenth of the best rate available from any bank within the industry.

This is another feather in the Unijos cap adding to a reputation for being a University is increasingly automated, driving most of it's processes with network technology.

More information at the Laptop Scheme Website

Laptop Ownership Schemes

Such "own your laptop/ notebook computer" schemes for staff actually exist in quite a few Nigerian universities. University of Ibadan has had it; so does the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) in Zaria. Indeed, in places like ABU Zaria, Faculties (eg. Vet Medicine) have made their own separate arrangements with a local manufacturer (Omatek).

As staff upgrade or change their laptops, students will be able to get the used ones at reasonable rates.

It is good movement and, one is pleased to note, led by Forum member institutions.