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The management of the University of Benin has announced the immediate shutdown of the University following a protest by students.
The closure was announced by the Vice-chancellor, Lilian Salami after students protested on Tuesday against the N20,000 hike in their tuition.
The students, who alleged that the institution’s spokesman told them to go into prostitution to pay their fees, gathered at the school main gate on Tuesday, carrying placards with different inscriptions, such as ‘Madam VC wants to milk us dry’, ‘Salami wants us to do cash out’, ‘UNIBEN VC Salami is after my sanity as a student, and many more.
UNIBEN had earlier announced that students who did not pay school fees within the stipulated time would have to pay extra charges and might have their studentship withdrawn.
In a video obtained by SaharaReporters, students were seen in their hundreds at the school’s main gate, with a voice saying, “UNIBEN students, we are under pressure, Aunty Lilian, please pity us.”
But in a statement issued by the Registrar of the institution on Wednesday, Ademola Bobola, Salami ordered all students to vacate their hostels and the University premises no later than noon on Wednesday.
“The Vice-Chancellor has reviewed the agitation by a section of the students’ body on Tuesday. After due consultation and in the overall interest of the general students’ body, the Vice-Chancellor has, on behalf of the Senate, approved the closure of the University with immediate effect.
“This is based on security reports to avoid the students’ action being hijacked by hoodlums, and thereby prevent any form of breakdown of law and order within and outside the campuses of the University,” the statement read.
According to a source, from an initial N14,000 tuition, the school management increased school fees for the 2017/2018 academic session to N41,400.
The university management led by the Vice-Chancellor, Salami, increased tuition from N41,400 to N45,000 at the resumption of the ongoing academic session.
However less than a month later, tuition was again hiked with an increment of N20,000, bringing the school fees to N65,000.
The freshers are asked to pay N90,000, a sum considered to be outrageous by the students.
This post was written by Obiajulu Joel Nwolu.
The views expressed here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect our views and opinions.