Education

Protest Grounds MAPOLY As Students Kick Against Hike In Fees

ABEOKUTA – Academic activities were disrupted on Monday as students of Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta, Ogun state blocked the entrance of the Polytechnic to protest an alleged hike in tuition fees by the management.

Though, a peaceful protest, the action saw most of the students shutting down the entrance to the polytechnic, disrupting the ongoing second semester examinations of the institution.

Some of the students barricaded the gates into the school premises, preventing other students from gaining access to write their examinations.

They bemoaned the alleged increase in fees, stating that though the management had earlier hinged the increment on not having enough funds to run the institution.

The protesting students equally alleged that the management of the polytechnic mismanaged and diverted funds.

The protesting students were seen chorusing solidarity songs, holding placards with various inscriptions like ‘We no be rich kids, na why we come MAPOLY’, ‘#Say No To Unreasonable Increments Now !!!’, etc.

The protesting students at the school gate

Addressing the media on behalf of the protesting students, the Chairman of NANS in the State, Damilola Kehinde, insisted that there must be complete reversal of the increments and introduction of new fees in the school.

Kehinde said, “We resisted this increment and came to a benchmark of reduction in the initially added amount after due consultation. The clear promise made to the students’ body by Dr Odedeji and other members of the management team is that there will no longer be an increment. At least, not in his own time as the Ag. Rector.

“Little did we know that he was only waiting for the state government to confirm his appointment as substantive Rector before unveiling his anti-poor policy to make MAPOLY unaffordable for the masses.

“There was no prior consideration of the economic conditions of parents and guardians, tuition fees were increased outrageously again for two consecutive sessions. This can best be described as the highest level of discomfort any management team could think of putting the students through.

“Ordinarily we could say the lack of funds to run the institution may be the reason for increasing tuition fee as claimed by the management, but how do we reconcile the fact that the same Dr Odedeji and few of his associates are buying generators, vehicles and other properties with and through the school resources, yet diverting it to be their private properties.”

Meanwhile, the management of Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta has described its recent hike in tuition and registration fees as lowest within the South West, Nigeria, dismissing the claim by the leadership of Ogun State chapter of National Association of Nigerian Students NANS who mobilized hundreds of students on Monday in protest against the new increase.

The Head, Public Relations and Protocol of the Institution, Mr. Yemi Ajibola in a statement made available to our reporter defended the decision on upward review of the tuition and registration fees.
Ajibola in the statement explained that MAPOLY, a second generation polytechnic in the country which has reputation for building of quality manpower for the country, had no choice than to  review such fees, in order to revive the Institution which almost went into extinction for two years over the controversy arising from the upgrading of the Institution to a University of Science and Technology by the immediate past Ibikunle Amosun’s administration.
“It is crystal undisputable that MAPOLY has been a super model to many other Institutions before the brouhaha of extinction notice served by the immediate past administration of Ogun State, upon the policy of conversion of MAPOLY to a University of Science and Technology since 2017, which fumes till today.
“Consequent upon this, in 2017, MAPOLY was delisted among the comity of Polytechnics in Nigeria with her over 45 accredited courses and programmes, which gave birth to Ogun State Polytechnic, Ipokia that was approved to run about 17 courses only.”
According to him, ‘”This was the situation, until the magnanimous intervention of the present Ogun State Government led by Prince Dapo Abiodun MFR, who pronounced the immediate return to status quo of MAPOLY in 2019.”
He also attributed the increase to the limitation of the Institution carrying capacity which had been reduced drastically by Joint Admission and Matriculating Board (JAMB).
“It should be noted that, the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board had pegged the carrying capacity of the Institution from about  17,000 to 1,470 slots for all the available courses.
“However, the Management, led by Dr. Adeoye Odedeji, inherited huge liabilities with over 6 months salary arrears. With the paucity of funds, Management made all efforts to clear the backlog within two months in a bid to stabilize the system”, Ajibola added
The statement further reads  in part:
“Recently, the Management introduced registration fee of N20,000 only, payable all newly admitted applicants, who are to enjoy the launching of full digital registration process on the Institution’s upgraded portal, as against the usual manual routines.

“Meanwhile, the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) requested for its removal, and subsequently, was reduced to 50 percent (ie N10,000) by the Governing Council after a wild deliberations with stakeholders”.

“Presently, it is on record that, MAPOLY still charges the least tuition fees in the South West.

“Similarly, admission application forms range from N2,000 to N7,500 only, depending on the category of application, either for National Diploma or Higher National Diploma programme with the acceptance fee remains N35,500 only.

“Medical screening exercise is compulsory to determine health status of the newly admitted students. This exercise is being carried out at designated registered medical centres outside the campus at a uniform economic rate.

“Conclusively, the Polytechnic does not collect money for Tax Clearance. Students are only expected to present tax receipt/certificate of their Parents or Guardians as evidence for fulfilment of tax obligation”

“This is a part of requisites for file arrangement during entry registration.

“Therefore, allegations levied against the Management of Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta by the NANS is baseless, sentimental and unsubstantiated.”

“Parents and Guardians, including general public are urged to visit www.mapoly.edu.ng for general information or contact us via the available social media platforms on the website or info@mapoly.edu.ng or infoaboutmapoly@gmail.com for inquiries.”, the statement concluded

 

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Michael-Azeez Ogunsiji

Ogunsiji is a finesse Journalist, content developer, investigative journalist, and fact-checker. He is also a trained broadcaster with over a decade in the journalism profession. He is the editor of THE ENCOUNTER NEWS.

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