The management of the Federal University of Technology Akure, Ondo State, has ordered the indefinite postponement of resumption of students for the 2023/2024 academic session.
This is contained in a statement issued on Monday in Akure, the state capital, by the institution’s Director of Corporate Communication, Mr. Adegbenro Adebanjo.
Adebanjo said that the management had also directed all students currently on campus and in hostels within the university, to vacate them within 24 hours.
He said the university’s management directed that registration and payment of fees of all returning students for the academic session via the university portal, scheduled to begin on Monday, be put on hold.
He stated that the university has not yet opened the portal for returning students for the new session, contrary to what is being bandied in the public domain.
Earlier, students of the institution staged a peaceful protest, alleging that the university’s management had increased the school fees despite economic hardship in the country.
Addressing the protesting students, the President, FUTA Student Union Government, Mr. Oluwasoromidayo Olayemi, pleaded with the management of the school to revert to the old school fees.
Olayemi said the last increment in tuition fees was not up to one year before the new hike.
He alleged that the management increased the school fees to over N200,000 for new students, while returning students paying N35,000 would now pay at least N130,000 depending on the academic programme.
He said that the peace protest would continue until the fees were reverted.
But the institution’s spokesman denied the alleged increment in school fees by the university management, saying that tuition was free.
“On the proposed new fees and charges, they are mainly for students-related services which are sourced from the economy.
“And the costs of such goods and services provided by the university for the students will certainly be impacted by costs of goods and services in the economy.
“To ensure smooth running of the university, certain consumables and payments for municipal services such as electricity, water, hostel maintenance and cleaning and sundry other services are necessary.
“And the costs of providing the services have shot up and the new charges are in response to this,” he said.
“Other costs that were adjusted as a result of economic reality include medical examination for all new students, biometric identity cards and Tertiary Institutions’ Students Health Insurance Programme, administered by NHIS for students and final yearbook.
“The management reiterates that tuition remains free for all students and that it has inbuilt mechanism within the system to look into and build consensus on matters affecting students including charges and fees.
“And that mechanism is working on this matter and consensus will be achieved,” the institution’s spokesman said.