Varsities decry non-payment of tuition, allowances by Presidential Amnesty Office

NIGERIAN universities partnering in the training of students under the Presidential Amnesty Scholarship Programme have decried the non-payment of the students’ tuition and other fees to the universities.

The chairman of the Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Registrars of Private Universities and vice-chancellor of Edwin Clark University, Professor Timothy Olagbemiro, in a statement made available to the Tribune Online, said the non-payment of the students’ tuition and In-Training Allowances (ITA) is causing untold financial embarrassment for the institutions and students.

He listed the partnering universities (the Group) as Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State; Novena University, Ogume, Delta State; Lead City University, Ibadan, Oyo State; Elizade University, Ilara-Mokin, Ondo State; Benson Idahosa University, Benin City, Edo State; Ritman University, Ikot-Ekpene, Akwa Ibom State; the University of Africa, Toru-Orua, Bayelsa State; Gregory University, Uturu, Abia State; Michael and Cecilia Ibru University, Agbara-Otor, Delta State; Admiralty University, Sapele, Delta State; Achievers University, Owo; Ondo State; Western Delta University, Oghara, Delta State, Edwin Clark University, Kiagbodo, Delta State, and Igbinedion University, Okada, Edo State.

The private universities wondered why these students would spend a whole session in the universities without their tuition being paid, noting that they are not charitable organizations that would train students free of charge, especially as the current situation had forced many the universities to take bank loans at huge interest rates.

The statement noted that the private universities had earlier written to the chairman, Caretaker Committee on Presidential Amnesty Programme requesting that the money owed the universities be paid, but nothing was done despite all the assurances.

​​“It is very sad that after almost one session of universities being owed by the Presidential Amnesty office, and over four months of non-payment of in-training allowance (ITA) to the students, the Caretaker Committee on Presidential Amnesty Programme is now planning to carry out verification exercise, thereby further postponing our payment,” the Group further emphasised.

It added that there is no way these universities could continue to train students using all the modern facilities, including organising online lectures during this pandemic, only for those who are supposed to make payment to be dragging their feet unnecessarily.

It also wondered how the students would students are expected to cope with academic activities without their in-service training allowances paid even if universities magnanimously allow the presidential amnesty students to resume.

It, therefore, requested for quick payment or the tuition and allowances “in line with the spirit and statement of President Muhammadu Buhari during the inauguration of the present task force which was tasked with ameliorating the erratic problem of the Presidential Amnesty Programme.”

 

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