Medical students of Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital Ndufu Alike Ikwo engaged in a peaceful protest today. The reason for the peaceful protest is as stated below.
REASONS FOR AEFUNAI MEDICAL STUDENTS PROTEST
- Exorbitant Tuition Fees for AEFUNAI Medical Students
AEFUNAI medical students complain that their School fees are outrageous when compared with other federal universities in Nigeria.
Year one medical students pay a total of 579,500 NGN, while pre-clinical ( 2nd and 3rd-year medical students) and clinical students(4th year to final year) pay 353,300 NGN and 551,300 NGN respectively.
In addition to the exorbitant tuition fees pre-medical students (year one) and medical students are also to pay a developmental levy of 250,000 NGN and 100,000 NGN respectively.
|Year/level||Tuition/School Fees||Developmental Levy|
|Year one medical Students||579,500 NGN||250,000|
|Second-year Medical Students||353,300 NGN||100,000 NGN|
|Third-year medical students||353,300 NGN||100,000 NGN|
|Fourth-year medical students||551,300 NGN||100,000 NGN|
|Fifty-year medical students||551,300 NGN||100,000 NGN|
|Final-year medical students||551,300 NGN||100,000 NGN|
2. Exorbitant Hostel Accommodation Fees and Unconducive Hostel Conditions
There is an obvious unexplained disparity between the hostel accommodation fees paid by medical students and other university students in AEFUNAI, notwithstanding the fact that the preclinical medical students and other university students stay in the same or similar hostel and are subject to the same hostel conditions.
The Pre-clinical medical students pay the sum of 87,000 NGN while the students in other departments pay 62,000 NGN.
The female pre-clinical students stay in the same hostel building as other female students. Consequently, there is no explanation for the disparity in the hostel accommodation fee.
Similarly, the male pre-clinical students, are said to be 6-7 students per room, which is not different from what is obtainable in the other male hostel yet a higher hostel accommodation fee is paid by the male pre-clinical students.
Two hostels have been built at Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital Abakaliki by the AEFUNAI management, for the clinical students. One of the hostels has been completed and is presently occupied by 400 level-A students (year 4A medical students) while the other hostel is not yet ready for use. As a result, the other clinical students are been quartered at the Grace Court Hotel which is dilapidated and has not been in use for some years thus subjecting the students to some hardships.
The clinical students occupying the Grace Court Hotel pay a whooping sum of 300,000 NGN per year, while the other clinical students quartered in the hostel are expected to pay 252,000 NGN per year.
|Year||Non-Medical Students |
|1||62,000 NGN||87,000 NGN|
|2||62,000 NGN||87,000 NGN|
|3||62,000 NGN||87,000 NGN|
|4||62,000 NGN||252,000 – 300,000 NGN|
3. Payment of Tuition/School Fees per General University Academic Session instead of the College of Medicine Session
Payment of school fees per general university academic session may seem harmless on the surface, however, college of medicines students may end up paying far more school fees than necessary if they are to pay according to the general university academic sessions.
The reason for the above is simply due to differences in session duration and the attendant accreditation issues plaguing new universities and colleges of medicine.
Presently there are four different sets of fourth-year medical students classes in AEFUNAI (A, B and C) due to MBBS accreditation issues.
These students are likely to spend more than the required six years in the university, meaning they will keep paying school fees even for the extra years of no academic progress due to MBBS accreditation delays.
4. Transportation Difficulties between the two Hospital Complexes (AEFUTHA 1 AND 2)
AEFUTHA has a long history and as such is divided into two facilities located in different parts of Abakaliki. The clinical students hostel is situated in AEFUTHA 1, while the Grace Court Hotel is also located close to AEFUTHA 1.
Consequently, the students need to move between AEFUTHA 1 and 2 on a daily basis for their clinical rotations and postings. This is associated with extra financial costs and the risk of road traffic accidents.
AEFUNAI MEDICAL STUDENTS DEMANDS
The protesting students made the following demands:
- Payment of developmental fee, to be a one-off payment made on admission into the university not per session or year.
- Reduction in the tuition fee/school fees to what is obtainable in other Federal universities in Nigeria.
- Pre-clinical students are to pay the same hostel accommodation levy as other students since they stay in the same hostel and are subject to the same hostel conditions.
- Hostel accommodation should not be compulsory for medical students since the available hostel accommodation is unable to cater for the ever-growing number of medical students.
- Provision of a bus for clinical students to ease their transportation issues during postings/clinical rotations.