The National President of National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), Mr Chidi Ilogebe, has urged the Federal Government and states to waive school fees in tertiary institutions as palliative to students.
Ilogebe made this known while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Enugu on Friday on national issues affecting Nigerian students recently.
According to him, honestly, it is our earnest desire that students in Nigeria are made comfortable while studying.
“It is no news that the Federal and some state governments have continuously doled out palliatives/grants to help resuscitate small and medium businesses for youths and women.
“It is on record that students were not considered in any of these arrangements.
“I, therefore, use this opportunity to call on governments at all levels to waive this 2019/2020 session’s school fees as COVID-19 educational support to Nigerian students,’’ he said.
Ilogebe also called on house owners/landlords around campuses to give rent/accommodation rebates to all students.
“We also call on house owners/landlords around campuses to give a 6-month rent rebate to all students living in their houses.
“This will serve as a morale booster to the students and help strengthen students-community relationships,’’ he said.
On the ASUU/NASU strike; the NANS boss urged the Federal Government to make haste to resolve the issues so that students can go back to classes; adding that the gains of this resolution cannot be overemphasized.
“We urge the Federal Government to resolve all issues with ASUU within the next seven days.
“NANS also calls on the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 to quicken the process of releasing the comprehensive protocols that will allow Nigerian tertiary institutions to reopen for lectures.
“We shall within the next few days before transiting to a new team that will carry on from where we stopped vigorously engage the government with a view to finding lasting solutions to these issues,’’ he said.
On students alleged involvement in #EndSARS protests, Ilogebe noted that the government and ASUU/NASU should settle their differences to make students go back to their classes and yet again become productive in their academic pursuits.
“The government desires that the protests be depopulated, the best way is to reopen our campuses.
“This does not mean that we condemn the motive of the protests. The cases of police brutality generally got out of hand and were worthy to be protested against.
“However, we believe it will be better for Nigeria as a country that the youths are in classrooms breaking new grounds than on the streets protesting.
“This call means that the government should step up its response to the demands and be more proactive,’’ he added.