By Emeka Mamah
Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State, has slashed fees paid by its students at the Ebonyi State University by N10,000 in a bid to end the prolonged agitation by students over the increase in school fees by the former administration of former governor Martin Elechi in the state.
Umahi had during his campaign promised to reduce the fees if he won the 2015 election.
The governor, spoke weekend during an interactive session with the management and staff of the university at Ezzamgbo, pointing out that the reduction would take effect from next year for both students of Ebonyi origin and non-indigenous people of the state.
The non-indigenes had been paying N128000 while those from the state paid N87,000 before this development, which was about the highest in the South East geopolitical zone.
“Now, there is going to be conditional reduction of school fees. If there is any case of cultism I will reverse it. So, I have reduced every body’s school fees, both indigenes and non-indigenes by N10,000 each,” Umahi said.
He however, asked the students to avoid cultism and criminal tendencies in order to continue to enjoy the tuition reduction.
The governor had while announcing a donation of 3,000 bags of rice and N10 million for the students of the university as their Christmas gifts, over heard them chanting, “Reduce our fees, reduce our fees.”
He also donated two buses to the Students Union Government for easy transportation of students to lectures.
Earlier, he announced the donation of rice each to all staff of the university with N5m to be shared by all of them for the Yuletide just as he approved all promotions of university staff which had been kept put on hold for years and gave the university authorities N100m loan for agricultural activities, causing wild jubilations on campus.
Umahi also advised that for any student to graduate from the Department of Agriculture, he/she should have at least one hectare of farm.
The Acting Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof Francis Idike who commended the governor for not only gazetting the university staff but bringing commendable changes to the system and assured the preparedness of the university community to support the vision and mission of his administration.