There was anger Sunday, Trailing the 500 per cent tuition fees increase by the management of Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba, AAUA, in Akoko, as parents and students vowed to resist the increment. The students, who have been out of school for over 80 days after completing their first semester examination, kicked against the increment, vowing to resist it. The tuition fee, which was N25, 000, was increased to N200, 000 by the state government, a development which generated condemnation across the state.
Announcing the commencement of the 2017/2018 academic activities, Head, Information, Protocol and Public Relations of AAUA, Sola Imoru, in a statement said “Faculties of Arts and Education – Fresh Students: N150,000, returning students: N120,000, Faculties of Science, Agric, Social and Mgt. Sciences- Fresh Students would pay: N180, 000, returning Students: N150, 000. Others include Faculty of Law – Fresh Students: 200,000, returning Students: N150, 000.”
The Ondo State government has explained that the increment in tuition fee was because of the crisis situation it inherited in the university. Explaining the increment, the Information, and Orientation Commissioner, Mr. Yemi Olowolabi denied that it was up 500 percent increment He said: “The Governing Council looked at the fees paid by students in the State University of Science and Technology which were between N120,000 and N150,000, University of Medical Sciences, Ondo, between N350, 000 and N450,000, while students of Adekunle Ajasin University pay N30,000 as tuition fee.
“Seven months before we came on board, salaries were not paid, accreditations were lost and no subvention paid to the institution. It was a crisis situation that we met on ground in the institution. It was after all these that the Governing Council decided that what the students in the institution were paying, as fees, was unrealistic.”
Some parents accused the state governor of reneging on his campaign promise of not increasing the tuition fees in the state tertiary institutions. They vowed to resist the increment by the governing council just as they asked the government not to approve it. One of the parents, Abiodun Jegede, a civil servant, who has two students in the institution, described the increase as “wickedness of the highest order.”
However, the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman Governing Council of the institution, Dr. Tunji Abayomi said the council will “put up measures to make payment of the coming fees regime easy for all.” “There will be options to pay by installments, while efforts will be made to ensure the fees will be less than the rumoured N200, 000, which we know will be difficult for most parents to pay”, Abayomi said.