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June 11, 2024

Japada: UK university offers flight home for Nigerian students facing financial crisis

Japada: UK university offers flight home for Nigerian students facing financial crisis
By Efosa Taiwo

Teesside University in the United Kingdom (UK) has announced plans to support Nigerian students facing financial difficulties by funding their flights home.

Recall students at Teesside University were thrown off courses and ordered to leave the UK after a currency crisis left them struggling to pay tuition fees.

The university had reported these students to the Home Office, resulting in their removal from courses and orders to leave the UK.

Following protests and the intervention of the Nigerian government, the university told the BBC it has now re-enrolled some affected students and opened a travel fund.

According to the BBC, Teesside University in Middlesbrough withdrew sponsorship for several Nigerian students after they failed to pay tuition fees due to financial difficulties.

It is reported that the economic crisis in Nigeria depleted these students’ savings, and a shift from a seven-installment to a three-installment payment plan by the university worsened their financial struggles.

A local food charity reported that 75% of its clients are now Nigerian students who are finding it difficult to make ends meet. Consequently, some students missed tuition payments, were barred from their studies, and received letters from the Home Office ordering them to leave the UK.

In May, a university spokesperson explained that non-payment of tuition fees constituted a violation of visa sponsorship terms, which required the university to report the students to the Home Office.

However, the university has now reversed this decision for some affected students, allowing them to continue their studies.

A spokesperson confirmed that a relief fund has been established to assist a small group of students with unexpected travel costs, allowing them to return to Nigeria.

The university has also offered some students the option to complete their studies remotely from Nigeria or to return to the UK at a later date.

“We are working with a small group who do need to return to their home country and are opening an international relief fund for this group only to offer additional financial support for these unexpected travel costs,” the spokesman said as quoted by the BBC.

It is, however, reported that some affected students have lodged legal appeals against the decision to deport them.

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