Nigerian students under the aegis of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) have decried the recent hike in registration fees in public universities.
Naija News reports that the NANS has threatened to stage what it described as “a mother of all protest” nationwide in two weeks’ time if the governing councils of universities do not reverse the decision.
The National Vice President, Special Duties of NANS, Suleiman Sarki, disclosed to pressmen on Thursday in Maiduguri the Borno State capital that plans are underway to protest the decision.
He alleged that the fee hike can result in a lot of cases of school dropouts because of parents’ inability to pay and the situation might ultimately force a huge number of Nigerian students into insurgency, banditry and kidnapping.
Sarki submitted that “I, for example, last year, I paid N29,830 last year in the University of Maiduguri, but this year it has increased to about N74,000.
“The recent hike in registration charges by some Nigerian universities does not only come to us as a surprise but as an affront to the war against insurgency, banditry and kidnapping.
“Students who are unable to pay the new fees might end up becoming dropouts and this will add to the rising number of youth restiveness in Nigeria, which may also in return increase the number of insurgents, bandits and kidnappers.”
He however noted that students are pleading with and hopeful that the government, elder statesmen, relevant stakeholders in the education sector and traditional rulers would intervene and prevail on the governing councils to rescind their decision on the fees hike.
While expressing the hope of the Nigerian students that the fees hike “will not see the light of the day”, he said “We expect that within the next two weeks, they will intervene for the fee increase to be withdrawn.
“We will lead students across the country on this mother of all protests after the two-week ultimatum, and we will not stop until the decision is rescinded.”