The Zambia National Students Union (ZANASU) has condemned Mulungushi University management and Higher Education Minister Nkandu Luo for the manner in which they handled students’ grievances over school fees.
And ZANASU has demanded for the reinstatement of Apex University students who were suspended following peaceful demonstrations recently.
For the past few days, Mulungushi University students have been fighting running battles with police demanding the reduction of fees.
In a statement today, ZANASU deputy secretary general David Shauli said it was not right for universities to hike fees overnight without proper consultations.
“We as a student mother body wish to express our greatest disappointment with the manner in which the management at Mulungushi University has handled the issue of tuition fees. This tendency by managements to hike fees overnight must come to an end because they need to realize that the fees they hike are not obtained on a silver plate by students. Secondly, this same tendency of not engaging students through their leaders in the consultation process is leading to students revolting against management’s decisions. We are also disappointed with the comment made by the Minister of Higher Education Hon Nkandu Luo as reported by the Daily Nation that students over reacted,” Shauli stated.
“According to our facts established on the ground, it is not true that students over reacted but it’s because management at the said university failed to engage students which prompted students to rise. We thank God that our students have been released but there’s need for proper dialogue between management and students in decision making in order to avoid such incidences in the future.”
He also demanded the reinstatement of some Apex University students who were suspended following protests.
“We wish to take this opportunity to demand for the reinstatement of the students at Apex University who were suspended due to peaceful demonstrations they had. The students had genuine reasons to demonstrate.
In as much as it is not our desire as ZANASU to see students riot, we are of the considered view that it is a constitutional right to demonstrate peacefully. However, we want to advise the police to stop this tendency of using excessive force on the students and make the situation seem as though our students are riotous.
We care for our properties and students are big investments for the development of this nation but there’s need for proper dialogue between the management and students through the union leaders in decision making for this investment to come to fruition,” stated Shauli.