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COVID-19: Students seek extension for payment of school fees, writing of exams

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Though the compulsory lockdown, which has put virtually every activity on hold nationwide, is still ongoing, undergraduates across the country are worried that hard times are imminent, once the lockdown is over.

Not only did they claim that they are beginning to feed on their school fees, they also alleged that most of them are not partaking in the online tutorials as they lack the basic facilities needed to join the classes.

Others claimed that their schools did not make provision for online classes; thus, schools should not be in a hurry to commence examination after the crisis.

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Some of the students that spoke with The Guardian appeared confused, as they worried about how they are going to cope with their studies after the lockdown.

The Guardian observed that most of the students have not paid their school fees and other dues, and some of these schools are at the verge of writing their examination before the outbreak of the virus.

They therefore call on government and key stakeholders to intervene and appeal to their various school authorities to give them more time to enable them source for the fees, and sit for the examinations as well.

A student of Adeyemi College of Education (ACE), Kolawole Funmilayo, said: “Government should monitor all the institutions of learning in Nigeria as most of them are always insisting on ‘no fees, no examination.’ This is the time school managements should show some understanding and give students some time before commencing examination.

“In my school, I know a coursemate that was sent out of exam hall just because of departmental dues, and he was not allowed to write departmental exams. He had carry over in those courses and he later dropped out just because of departmental dues. Now imagine, half of us haven’t paid our school fee, and they were already warning us before the outbreak of the virus and we are at the verge of writing examination before the lockdown.”

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Another student, Busayo Oyegoke, from Adekunle Ajasin University Akungba Akoko (AAUA), believed that it is only government’s intervention that will halt some of the challenges awaiting undergraduates after the lockdown.

“The Federal government should give directive to the management of various tertiary institutions in the country, to give students few weeks to read before the commencement of their examination. This will also give us time to source for our school fees.”

For Opeyemi Peters from Ekiti State University (EKSU), “We are not used to online learning in Nigeria, so our government should know that larger percentage of us are not learning from home. In fact, those that their schools are offering online learning, find it difficult to afford data with the present state of the economy.

“Government should talk to our school managers so that they can give us time to read and look for our school fee, as some of us that engage in menial work to sponsor ourselves don’t have opportunity since the pandemic lockdown have disrupted our plan.”

Opeyemi Akande a student of Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro said, “For someone like me, I’ve spent my school fees on foodstuffs in this lockdown. So, we are pleading to the schools management to extend the date of examination, so we can get prepare and find our school fees.”

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