December 5, 2022

PAYMENT OF OUTSTANDING BALANCE OF TUITION FEES IN RESPECT OF 91 ZAMFARA STATE STUDENTS AT CYPRUS INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY.

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The attention of Zamfara state government was drawn by some media reports ( conventional and online ) in respect of the above subject matter.

It is gratifying to note that Zamfara state government under the leadership of His Excellency, the Executive Governor Hon (Dr) Bello Mohammed Matawallen Maradun, Barden Hausa, Shatiman Sokoto in its determination and commitment to improving educational sector of the state, as well as filling in the wide gab in the health and tertiary institution manpower sectors of the state, resolved to sponsor 200 students of poor parental background to give them a sense of belonging and to carry everybody along in the government.

These students were sent to various institutions of higher learning across various countries within Africa and overseas to study medicine and it’s related courses, engineering, technology and other science based courses. These countries include India, Cyprus, US, UK, Neither land, Sudan etc.

The decision to send the children to these countries followed the persistent industrial strikes by the Nigerian University lecturers which paralysed teaching and learning activities across the country.

It is gratifying to note here that the Cyprus students in their letter to Nigerians in Diapora Commission and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation regarding this matter, have all acknowledged the fact that the processes of their admission were done a few weeks to the crisis of the covid-19 pandemic which almost brought the whole world to its knees.

The general public may recall that at the time of this crisis, almost all countries imposed travel restrictions and almost all institutions including financial institutions were almost shut down.

Further more, the general public may also recall the stringent economic and fiscal policies of the Central Bank which makes it very difficult to secure foreign exchange for any business transaction, including educational purposes. These and other restrictions have made it very difficult for the Zamfara state government to process the payment of the students tuition fees in that university. Just three (3) months ago, a government delegation under the leadership of the Speaker, Zamfara state House of Assembly Rt Hon Nasiru Muazu Magarya went round the countries where we sent our students, paid their upkeep welfare allowances, took stock of their problems with a view to solving them and discussed with the institutions’ authorities regarding the welfare and study of the students.
It is gratifying to note that the students said they were visited about four (4) months ago to give them their upkeep allowances which is an indication that the government is fully committed to the welfare and study of the students, as they also acknowledged that the crisis they are in started last month and since then government has been working day and night pleading with the Central Bank of Nigeria to get the tuition fees paid into the University’s account.

The institution has already submitted an invoice to the government on this matter with number 1245 dated 4th August 2022, requesting the Zamfara State Government to pay the outstanding balance of EUR 297,509.11 owed for the 2021-2022 academic year and another payment of EUR 386,598.00 for the 2022-2023 academic year starting in September 2022.

The government has since communicated to the University, the approval of the Governor for the payment of the tuition fees and the process for securing the forex from the Central Bank of Nigeia is ongoing.

“In view of the above, I wish to inform you that the Zamfara State Executive Governor has approved the payment of EUR 232,000.00 into the Cyprus International University’s bank account as provided. “The Central Bank of Nigeria will complete clearance this week and subsequently release it into your account. Distribution of the money is as per below:
“I. EUR 200,000 as tuition, accommodation and meal fees being paid out of EUR 297,509.11 initially owed for the 2021-2022 academicyear;

“II. EUR 23,157.00for Residence Permit; and
“III. EUR 8,843.00 to be distributed across the 91 students.” said the letter to the university sent from office of the Secretary to Zamfara state Government.

The government therefore appeal to both the students, their parents and the university to exercise more patience, as the matter will soon be resolved and the students will continue their studies with minimum delay. The government also call on missguided political blackmail and mischief makers to always cross check issues before going to press, to allow this country progress.
Government of Zamfara state should instead be commended for its courage, commitment and determination to sponsor such a huge number of children of poor parental background to study abroad despite the current economic hardship brought about by the global economic meltdown and the security challenges being faced by the state government since its inception, over three years ago, especially in consideration of the almost two years University students have been sitting at home due to the ongoing ASUU strike in Nigeria.

Signed
Ibrahim Magaji Dosara
Hon Commissioner of Information
Zamfara state
23/08/2022

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