Students Solidarity Group Against Price Hike, a student organization, has announced a protest against the University of Lagos administration’s price increase.
In a statement seen by News About Nigeria on Saturday, the group’s spokespeople, Tosin Solanke and Abayomi Godwin, said it had “become imperative to inform the public of a mass protest against fee hike scheduled to start on September 6, 2023, as students, parents, civil society organizations, and informal workers, are set to hit the streets to say enough of untold hardship meted out to us.”
The management of UNILAG announced an increase in the undergraduate students’ tuition rates on July 21, 2023, citing “prevailing economic realities.”
For students majoring in medicine, the UNILAG administration raised the tuition from N19,000 to N190,250, while it was N140,250 for courses requiring lab and studio work.
A few of the student group’s members marched around Lagos’ Ikoyi and Falomo neighborhoods on Thursday before congregating at the Arise TV Complex to inform onlookers about the pattern of tuition increases in several universities. They saw that the UNILAG administration had neglected to invite the student delegation to a subsequent meeting.
In response to the management of UNILAG’s announcement of a fee increase, they claimed, “We in the Students Solidarity Group Against Fee Hike engaged in a series of actions to educate members of the public about the risks that this anti-poor policy portends for the generality of the people.
“Our argument remains that the responsibility of funding public education can not be shifted to poor students and their parents even in a draining economy such as this. We also maintain that the decision taken by the UNILAG management, supervised by their employers, remains authoritarian and economically inconsiderate,” the students said.
Recall that President Bola Tinubu gave instructions to officials in all federal institutions of higher learning on July 31, 2023, to avoid arbitrary increases in various fees that must be paid and, whenever feasible, postpone additional increases so that parents and students would not have too much difficulty.