Save us: Poor students plead

HARARE - As Zimbabwe's economic crisis continues to deepen, impoverished university students around the country have pleaded for urgent intervention by both the government and the corporate sector to bail them out financially ahead of their end-of-year examinations which begin on Monday.

This comes as thousands of students at various universities have failed to pay their tuition fees due to the country’s worsening economic rot, which is widely blamed on President Robert Mugabe and his ruling Zanu PF.

At the National University of Science and Technology (Nust) in Bulawayo alone, about 1 000 students face the dim prospects of failing to write their examinations after failing to pay their fees for the current semester.

“It should be noted that these unregistered students are the progenies of civil servants whose salaries are now being paid haphazardly without mentioning world record warehouse retrenchments we all witnessed more than a year ago.

“Such a myriad of economic challenges gives an eloquent testimony to the degree of understanding that these proletariat students deserve as they restlessly continue to be progenitors of economic restoration and bulwarks of social progression, economic development and political inclusiveness,” former Nust student leader Rodwell Nyika said in a letter to Higher Education minister Jonathan Moyo.

Nyika also argued that the government was supposed to ensure that citizens had access to higher education, quoting the Constitution to buttress his point.

Meanwhile, the University of Zimbabwe (UZ) has given an ultimatum to all its students in arrears, to pay their debts before January 30.

The spokesperson of the Zimbabwe National Students Union (Zinasu), Zivai Mhetu, said students owed UZ more than $2,8 million in unpaid fees.

“We are therefore appealing to the corporate world to give us vacation jobs so that we can be able to raise the money. This money can even go straight to the university account.
“If we do not pay our debts, it means we will not be able to access our results and might also be forced to defer our studies,” Mhetu said.

Zimbabwe is currently in the grip of a serious political and economic crisis which has led to worsening civil unrest, rising poverty and unemployment levels, and disastrous company closures.

Mugabe, the only president that Zimbabweans have known since the country gained its independence from Britain in 1980, is also facing the biggest challenge to his 36-year uninterrupted stay in power.

Comments (1)

we, students need a government that sees through the eyes of understanding

TAFADZWA - 25 November 2016

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