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Abuja varsity students protest hike in tuition fee, others

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University of Abuja

Students of the University of Abuja (UniAbuja), on Monday, took to the streets of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in a protest against the hike intuitions.

The students, who blocked the main gate of the university, preventing other students and staff from gaining access into the campus, made four demands from the management.

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The demands of the students are that the management should re-open and extend the school fee portal till the end of the session and that there should be no late payment of any registration fee.

Other demands of the students are that the school management reviews the school fee charges ahead of the next session and review of the College of Health Science fees for the current session.

The students also want the management to postpone the first-semester examination date to March 8, 2021.

Reacting to the protest, Head, University Relations, University of Abuja, Dr. Habib Yakoo, said: “The university management is surprised that while so many of our students were excited to be back to campus today after 10 months at home, they were held back by some elements among students who were protesting the same issue that had already been addressed by the university.”

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According to him, “Following the release of 2019/2020 academic calendar by the Senate of the university, the registration of students was to be done in four weeks.

Following the expiration of this process, the university closed the portal in February 2020 in line with the 2019/2020 academic calendar. Yet after pleas from the students’ union, the vice-chancellor, in his magnanimity, twice directed the reopening, at different times, of the portal to accommodate those who didn’t register on time.”

He added that in the last week, a couple of meetings were held with the students’ union, which again demanded the reopening of the portal.

“The university administration held an emergency meeting with the union at 2.00 pm on Sunday, 31st January 2021, and considered their appeal.

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“Consequently, the portal was reopened on Sunday, 31st January 2021 for registration, for another two weeks – till February 14 2021, and the students were duly informed.”

“Again, the late registration fee for those who had not paid their school fee as well as those who paid but did not register was waived; and late registration fee of N5, 000 was to be refunded to students who had earlier paid.

He added: “The university appeals to all law-abiding students to not partake in disrupting the 2019/2020 academic calendar, considering the amount of time lost to the strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and COVID-19 pandemic.”

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