The Zambia National Educational Coalition (ZANEC) has expressed sadness and shock by the decision made by Copperbelt University (CBU) Management to slap a K1, 500 each penalty fee on students for damages caused to property during the last riot.
ZANEC executive director George Hamusunga has stated that the surcharge in simple arithmetic shows that the university will collect almost K20, 000,000 if all students pay.
Mr Hamusunga says that as a Coalition, they are of the view that the institution is using this as a resource mobilization strategy to subsidize the cost of securing the premises which the former Minister of Higher Education Hon Nkandu Luo had proposed.
He further warns that this is unacceptable adding that ZANEC has called for an independent and transparent assessment of the actual cost of the damage at the university.
The Zanec ED has stressed that the parents and the guardians of the learners need to know the true costs to be met adding that it is unfair that parents must meet such high costs in this harsh economy.
“As ZANEC we acknowledge and agree with the statement made by the Minister of Higher Education Hon. Brian Mushimba that the surcharge is too high. We call upon the Minister to quickly open up dialogue with the management at the university and students union leaders in order to agree on an acceptable surcharge. We hope that this engagement with the Minister will take place as soon as possible so that this matter is addressed.” He said.
By Ricky Mwakwa