The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has disapproved of the presidency’s remarks on the hike in school fees, labelling them as misleading and deceitful.
The presidency, represented by Dele Alake, Special Adviser to the President on Communication, refuted claims that President Bola Tinubu had increased tuition fees in federal universities.
Alake clarified that each university has the discretion to set charges for hostel accommodation, registration, laboratory, and other fees, which are not considered tuition fees.
NANS, however, views the presidency’s comments as a veiled attempt to obscure the real issues and the extent of students’ crises due to decisions made by the Federal Government and tertiary institution authorities.
The student body accuses the Tinubu-led administration of showing a lack of commitment to improving the education sector.
NANS demands an immediate reversal of the fee increase across all federal universities and calls for the proposed student loan scheme by the Federal Government to be scrapped.
Instead, it advocates for proper funding of the education sector to ensure the delivery of quality education.
The recent comments by the presidency on the increase in school fees have sparked a heated debate. The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has quickly criticised these remarks, calling them misleading and deceitful.
The crux of the issue lies in interpreting what constitutes ‘tuition fees’.
While the presidency maintains that tuition fees have not been increased, it acknowledges that universities can set charges for other services such as hostel accommodation, registration, and laboratory fees.
This raises the question: Is the distinction between tuition fees and other charges just a matter of semantics? The reality for students is that education costs are rising, regardless of how these costs are categorised.
The government’s stance, as articulated by the presidency, seems to be an attempt to deflect criticism by focusing on the technical definition of ‘tuition fees’. However, this approach fails to address the underlying issue – the affordability of tertiary education in Nigeria.
The government needs to take a more holistic view of the cost of education. It’s not just about tuition fees, but the total cost students must bear to pursue their education. While a step in the right direction, the proposed student loan scheme is not a panacea.
It’s a short-term solution to a long-term problem. The real solution lies in increasing investment in the education sector, improving the quality of education, and making it more accessible and affordable for all.
Did You Know?
- Nigeria has one of the largest populations of students in Africa, with over 2 million students enrolled in tertiary institutions.
- The average cost of studying at a federal university in Nigeria has steadily increased over the past decade.
- Nigeria’s spending on education is below the UNESCO recommended benchmark of 15-20% of the total budget.
- While common in many countries, Nigeria’s student loan scheme is a new concept.
- The quality of education in Nigeria has been a subject of concern, with the country ranking low in global education quality indices.
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