Rector of Federal Polytechnic, Nekede, Rev Dr Micheal Chidiebere Arimanwa has said that despite the upward review in the service charge which is aimed at repositioning the institution and sustaining it’s standard as the best polytechnic in the country, it is on record that students of the institution still pay the lowest fees compared to those of other federal institutions in the country.
The Rector who made this clarification in an interview with newsmen in Owerri over the weekend noted that, contrary to the falsehood being peddled on the social media by mischief makers, even with the increase in service charge which is necessitated by the ever increasing administrative cost and logistics, the Federal Polytechnic Nekede still pays the lowest amount as fees compared to what is obtainable in other federal institutions in the country”.
He also stated that the upward review was not done unilaterally as the leadership of the students Union Government and other stakeholders were consulted and they saw need for it. They understood the plight of the management and pleaded that the proposed increase should not be more than 50%”.
“Another understanding reached with the leadership of the Student Union Government was that old students should pay the old fees while new intakes should pay the new fees”.
Dr. Arimanwa further stated that after meeting, discussing and streamlining issues about the proposed increase in school fees, management of the institution also met with the National Association of Imo State Students NAISS, “who after our explanation that there was urgent need for the school to boost it’s internally Generated Revenue (IGR) base to enable it address the enormous challenges and the attendant rise in administrative costs and logistics,they appreciated the plight of management.”
He explained that, aside other programmes initiated by the school, the welfare of casual workers, including cleaners, security personnel and the provision of stationery among others are taken care of with funds that accrue from service charge.
Engr Arimanwa expressed dismay that most of those raising dust that the school’s fees are on the high side are non students who are not aware of the discussion between the governing council , the management and leadership of the students before the upward review of school fees was unanimously agreed on, prior to implementation.
The Rector however said, “under normal circumstances, once the Senate has deliberated on such issues, and taken a decision, there is no going back. But that notwithstanding and because of my background and love for the students , I am presently discussing with the Senate to see if there could be a slight downward review of fees”.
“He said that, the Federal Polytechnic, Nekede has for some years now held the position of best Polytechnic in Nigeria. We can’t afford to lower the standard because of poor funding. Presently, the school has introduced what it calles Smart Campus Initiative which helps to reduce human contact and reduce the spread of Covid-19 pandemic. As it is now, fees can be paid on line, registration of courses, applications, payment for and acquisition of transcripts can be done on-line, etc.”
He said, if not for the strike action, the school would have been organizing online lectures for students as obtainable in most developed countries. “The school is taking all these measures to reduce the challenges students ordinary face and make teaching and learning stress free”.
The Rector called on members of the general public to disregard the falsehood being peddled by those who thrive in sowing the seeds of discord.