Students of the University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, have criticised the school authorities over N10,000 surcharge imposed on them.
The university was shut on June 12, 2013, following the killing of a student during a protest.
The students were protesting against an increment in tuition fees by the authorities.
The demonstration occurred before the industrial action embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of the Universities, which led to the closure of the nation’s public universities for over five months.
But speaking with our correspondent on Monday, a 200-Level microbiology student, Miss Nseowo Ita, said the N10,000 was too high for each student to pay.
“Some of us who are in the university survive by the grace of God. Adding N10,000 to our school fee is just too high for indigent students to cope.
“Since I got admitted, the VC has been displaying an attitude that is not students-friendly. What is she going to gain by imposing this amount on us?
“What resulted in the burning of her office and the death of a student would have been avoided if she had listened to the plight of the students,” she said.
A 500-level engineering student, Mr. Godwin Ikotidem, also frowned on the surcharge, describing it as too high.
He said, “There are lots of indigent students in this school who will not be able to pay this money before the deadline.
“Some students are self-sponsored, who have to pay their house rent, feed themselves before paying their school fees.
“The authorities should do something about indigent but brilliant students, who most times do not involve themselves in students’ demonstration.”
Also, Edwin Ikpe, a 200-level Health Education student, said he was happy to be back on campus to continue his programme.
Although he has paid the surcharge, he decried what he called the high-handedness of the school management over the fee.
“When you consider that only a few students caused the destruction of the property and all of us are made to pay the damages, it is very unfortunate.
“I wish the school authorities had put this into consideration before arriving at the amount to pay.
“Some students will find it difficult to pay this money and this may affect their academic activities as the school resumes,” he said.
Effort to reach the Registrar of the institution, Mrs. Edak Umondak, to speak on the surcharge proved abortive as she was not in the office when our correspondent visited.