By Adebayo Olodan
The Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, yesterday reacted to the hike in tuition fees of Kwara State Polytechnic, Ilorin for the 2017/18 academic session.
In a tweet on his official Twitter handle, @bukolasaraki on Wednesday, Saraki, who is a former governor of the state, said education must be affordable for all Nigerians.
He decried the increment in school fees of Kwara State Polytechnic students, saying it does not reflect affordability.
“I have made my views known to Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed, and I am trusting that he will look into it.”
Students of the polytechnic have staged series of protests against the tuition hike. The aggrieved students described the tuition increment as an act of wickedness and called on the state government and management of the polytechnic to immediately reverse its decision on the newly introduced school fees.
However, the school management and the state government denied there was an increment in the school fees.
According to information circulating on social media, indigent students who paid N32, 500 last academic session are now expected to pay the sum of N52, 500 while non-indigenes will part with N72, 000 instead of the N32, 090 they paid into the institution’s coffers, a year ago.
For non-indigene ND 1 students, they are to pay a whooping N84, 200 as against the N72, 500 charged for the 2016/17 session. Additionally, the new students are also expected to pay acceptance fees of N5, 000 for indigenes and N7, 500 for non-indigenes.
Returning ND II fulltime students are to pay N52, 000 (indigenes) and N72, 000 for non-indigenes. For last session, ND II fulltime students (indigenes) paid N29, 500 while their non-indigene counterparts paid N32, 090.
The new approved school fees for HND 1 indigenous fulltime students is N69, 200 as against the N59, 000 that was charged last session and for the non-indigenes, they are to pay N89, 700 as against N76, 000 paid last year. The students are also expected to N5, 000 and N7, 500 as acceptance fee respectively.
For HND II fulltime students, indigenes are to pay N58, 500 and non-indigenes will pay N75, 500. This is against the N32, 700 and N35, 900 they respectively paid last session.
Meanwhile, the Senate President, Bukola Saraki while speaking on Monday at the 5th Anniversary Lecture, organised by the Northern Union in honour of his late father in Abuja, said three things he would never forget about Dr Abubakar Olusola Saraki.
“My father believed in giving. His life was about giving. Oloye had no limits, he was always giving. Giving was not just materialistic, it was also about giving his time and serving his community.”
Speaking further, the Senate President said, “My father believed in consensus. He believed in dialogue — even for the little things, you would always see him consulting.
“My father also had courage. Once Oloye believed in something, he always had the courage to get up and get it done. We must always be ready to stand up to do the right thing for this country of ours,” he divulged.
Recall that Dr Olusola Saraki died on Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at his Ikoyi residence in Lagos State after a brief illness and was subsequently buried in Ilorin, his hometown according to Islamic rites. He was aged 79.