The National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) has described as unfair the justifications provided by the University of Ghana for an increment in its fees for the 2022/2023 academic year.
Tertiary institutions were directed by the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission (GTEC) to increase their fees by 15%, a decision kicked against by various student groups.
The student groups believe the public tertiary institutions increased the fees by more than the required percentage.
Explaining the current increment which has created some furore among students and parents, Pro-Vice-Chancellor in charge of Academic and Student Affairs at the University of Ghana, Professor Gordon Awandare, in an interview on the Citi Breakfast Show said nothing illegal has been done by the management of the university adding that GTEC got its explanation wrong in its earlier statement on the increment.
“We are increasing our fees exactly according to the law. What is going on is that the communication that came from GTEC misled the students into thinking that the fee increment was based on a specific 2021/2022 fee so even if you were paying a subsidised fee in 2021/2022 then we need to use that which is completely wrong.
“The increase was charged on the last appro and the last appro was in 2019…So it will be ridiculous to say we should use whatever we used last year, so if we were charging illegal fees last year, we should continue using that. Let’s do things properly, and so we should not mislead students to think that anything illegal is being done here.”
But Joshua Opey, General Secretary of NUGS in an interview with Citi News said even going back to the 2019/2020 academic year to buttress its decision to increase its fees was a none starter.
“If you are talking about the fact that these are fees that were supposed to be paid in the previous academic year, thus, the 2019/2020 academic year, and you are now bringing that conversation back for students to pay, it is unfair to the students involved because the students in the 2019/2020 academic year are not the same students in the school now.”
But the National Union of Ghana Students maintains the university must comply with the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission’s directive for all public universities to implement the 15% approved fees based on the fees charged for the previous academic year.
“The Act is clear on the fact that the payments that were paid in the previous academic year are what the approved 15 percent increase is supposed to be charged on.”