Despite gripping poverty in Nigeria, particularly in the North, Governor Nasir El-Rufai has increased tuition in all Kaduna tertiary institutions.
According to the World Bank’s Multidimensional Poverty Measure, Nigeria is the largest contributor to multidimensional poverty in sub-Saharan Africa. The region experiences the highest levels of deprivations in multidimensional poverty.
Mr El-Rufai said the increased school fees were to reposition institutions to deliver quality skills and training to tackle 21st-century challenges.
The institutions are Kaduna State University (KASU), Nuhu Bamali Polytechnic, Zaria, Kaduna State College of Education (COE), Gidan Waya, Shehu Idris College of Health Sciences, Makarfi, and Kaduna State College of Nursing and Midwifery.
On Friday, the state complained it spent N25 million monthly on KWASU but the school generated N765.9 million yearly.
The Commissioner of Education, Shehu Makarfi, said KASU was directed to increase the fees “from between N24,000 and N26,000 to a minimum consolidated fee of N150,000.”
The government pegged the minimum fees for National Diploma and Higher National Diploma at a minimum of N75,000 and N100,000, respectively; the National Certificate in Education (NCE) programmes in COE Gidan Waya raised to N75,000.
“We want our tertiary institutions to offer courses like IT, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, satellite technology, and other skills that are in high demand globally.
“Government is ready to invest resources in tertiary institutions as long as they are ready to go along with the dynamics in society and the world at large,” said the commissioner.
Kaduna said it provided free education from pre-primary to senior secondary schools.
He pointed out that KASU Management was finding it difficult to run the school due to inadequate funds.
The commissioner further noted that KASU could not accommodate the quantum of students who applied for various institution programmes due to carrying capacity issues.
He explained, “So, why don’t we create an enabling environment, increase the carrying capacity of KASU for our children to remain at home, learn at home and pay less?
“I want to tell our parents and other stakeholders that despite the increased fees, we are still subsiding compared to what other universities are collecting. Students in our tertiary institutions pay the least fees in this part of the country.”
Students of KASU had rejected the increase during a meeting with the school management on April 22.
Abdulrazak Shuaibu, who spoke on behalf of the students, said the fees rose from N26,000 to N150,000 for students in the Faculty of Arts, Management, and Social Sciences.
Mr Shuaibu, a former President of Kaduna State Students Union, added that students of the Faculty of Medicine from the state would now pay N300,000 as against N24,000 while non-indigenes would pay N500,000.