Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA) students staged a protest on Monday against the university management’s decision to increase tuition fees.

The protesting students at the Federal University of Technology, Akure, took the action of shutting the main gate of the institution, obstructing both entry and exit. They emphasized their demand for the reversal of the tuition fee increment.

Olayemi Oluwasoromidayo, the President of FUTA Students Union Government, while speaking to newsmen on the development stated that the students’ union body has met with the management many times on the matter but the management refused to accede to their demand, leading to the protest.

Oluwasoromidayo pointed out that the management had increased the school fees to over N200,000 for new students, while old students who were paying N35,000 would now pay N130,000.

However, the management of the university has shut down the institution indefinitely and ordered the indefinite postponement of resumption of students for the 2023/2024 academic session.

The institution’s Director of Corporate Communication, Adegbenro Adebanjo, issued a statement directing all students currently on campus and in university hostels to vacate within 24 hours.

Besides, the management directed that registration of returning students via the university portal and payment of fees by all returning students for the new academic session via the portal scheduled to begin on Monday, January 15, 2024 be put on hold.

“It is important to state that the university did not open the portal for registration for returning students for the new session contrary to what was being bandied in the public domain.

“On the proposed new fees and charges, they are mainly for students related services which are sourced from the economy. And the costs of such goods and services provided by the university for the students will certainly be impacted by costs of goods and services in the economy.

“To ensure smooth running of the university, certain consumables and payments for municipal services such as electricity, water, hostel maintenance and cleaning and sundry other services are necessary and the costs of providing the services have shot up and the new charges are in response to this,” the statement said.

Adebanjo added that other costs that were adjusted as a result of the economic reality included medical examination for all new students, biometric ID cards and Tertiary Institutions Students Health Insurance Programme (TISHIP) administered by NHIS for students and final year book.

“It is important to say that tuition is free and no money is being charged as tuition fee. The management reiterates that tuition remains free for all students and that it has inbuilt mechanism within the system to look into and build consensus on matters affecting students including charges and fees. And that mechanism is working on this matter and consensus will be achieved,” he said.

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