The University of Lagos (UNILAG) management has provided an explanation for asking students staying on campus to bring their own mattresses and personal items into the halls of residence, citing health reasons.
This clarification comes in response to protests from parents who expressed concerns about the recent increase in tuition, hostel, and other fees at the university.
Adejoke Alaga-Ibraheem, the Head of the Information Unit at the university, stated that the dormitories are currently undergoing renovation in preparation for the students’ return later in the month.
She addressed the complaints from parents and students, emphasizing that students have been required to provide their own bedding for health reasons, and this practice is not new. The renovation of various hostels is underway, with some expected to be fully renovated before the students’ return. For those hostels that may not be completed in time, work will continue to make them suitable for student occupancy.
Regarding the argument that hostel fees should cover the provision of these items, Alaga-Ibraheem noted that the cost of these items in the country, coupled with the current economic situation, makes it challenging for the school to provide them. She also stated that the hostel fees charged, such as N65,000 for a year, are reasonable compared to private accommodation costs.
A concerned parent expressed dismay at the situation, comparing UNILAG to a secondary school where students are asked to bring their own bedding. The recent fee increases, including hostel fees, have raised concerns among students and parents.
Notably, UNILAG initially increased hostel fees from N25,000 to between N100,000 and N120,000, depending on the type of hostel. After student and parent protests, the fees were reduced to between N65,000 and N85,000. In contrast, some private hostels near UNILAG charge as much as N184,500 for a four-person room and N200,000 for a two-person room per bed space.
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