The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), Ogun state chapter, have rejected the recent hike in school fees across the tertiary institutions in the state, urging the state government to either reverse the “abnormal and killing school fees” within four days or be ready for a mass protest in which they will shut down the state and occupy the Governor’s Office until their requests are granted.
Recall that students of Tai Solarin University of Education (TASUED), Ijebu-Ode, had on Monday protested the over 100% increase in their school fees.
NANS Ogun said that it was targeted at forcing many of them out of school and making life so difficult for them and their parents.
Addressing journalists in Abeokuta on Thursday, the NANS Chairman, Francis Adeyanju, kicked against what he described as an “abnormal” increment in the school fees of all the state-owned tertiary institutions.
Adeyanju threatened to shut down the state with mass protests if the government failed to reverse the hiked school fees in the next four days.
The NANS Chairman, flanked by the National President of the National Association of Ogun State Students (NAOSS), KehindeMatthew, described the increment in school fees as an attempt to prevent vulnerable and indigent students in the state from accessing affordable and qualitative education.
He expressed displeasure at the “insensitivity of the government towards the plights of students and development of education in the state”.
Adeyanju said, “It is no rumour that the government has almost abandoned tertiary education, this is evident in the current deplorable state of our campuses across the state.
“Our schools are now filled with decaying infrastructure, inadequate teaching and non-teaching staff, unconducive learning environment and salaries of staff are being owed.
“Most pathetic is the recent hike in school fees across our tertiary institutions. This is unfair and unacceptable. At Tai Solarin University of Education (TASUED), returning students are now to pay N180,000 as against N76,500 per session, while new students are now to pay as much as N230,000.
“The school fees of Moshood Abiola Polytechnic (MAPOLY), have been jacked up from N62,000 to N120,000 for Science students, while on-science students are to pay between N150,000 to N155,000 as against N55,000.
“For Ogun State Polytechnic of Health and Allied Sciences, the school fees were increased from N67,000 to N109,000 for indigenous students, while non-indigenous students are now to pay N124,000 as against N77,400. These are just a few examples of the abnormal increment in school fees of tertiary institutions in the State.
“There is no excuse for any government to increase school fees abnormally for whatsoever reason, in as much as we are concerned as progressive-minded Nigerian students’ leaders, we believe the government is at liberty to diversify and seek funds, but tertiary institutions should not be seen as an avenue to source for funds.
“Tertiary institutions should not be seen as an avenue to generate IGR, rather they should be seen as an avenue to prepare the youths for the future, for us to take our leadership positions.
“We hereby give the Ogun State Government a four-day ultimatum to reverse all increments in state-owned institutions.
“If nothing is done at the expiration of the ultimatum, we will mobilise our students across the shutdown of the state in a mass protest until our demands are met.” Adeyanju declared