The Presidency on Wednesday said federal universities in the country remain tuition-free.
Dele Alake, Special Adviser to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu on Special Duties, Communications and Strategy, disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday.
The management of the University of Lagos had recently increased fees for undergraduate student from N19,000 to new fees of N190,250 for students studying medicine and N140,250 for courses that require laboratory and studio.
This had generated some reactions as many criticised the action amid the effect of fuel subsidy removal.
In a statement on Wednesday, the Presidential spokesman said it confirmed that what were considered as tuition fees were actually discretionary charges by each university for hostel accommodation, registration, laboratory and other charges.
He, however, said the Students’ Loans Scheme, under the Student Loans Bill signed into law by President Tinubu last month, would go into implementation ahead of the next academic session in September.
Alake added that the Federal Government would also strengthen other mechanisms to support indigent students.
He said: “It was widely reported earlier this week across some news media outlets that the Federal Government had increased tuition fees in federal universities in the country.
“These reports are inaccurate and not correct. We are aware that some universities have in recent weeks announced increase in the amount payable by students on sundry charges. However, the fact remains and we have confirmed that these are discretionary charges by each university for hostel accommodation, registration, laboratory and other charges. They are not tuition fees.
“Authorities of these universities even made this fact clear enough in explaining the rationale behind these new fees.
“For avoidance of doubts, federal universities in Nigeria remain tuition-free. President Bola Ahmed Tinubu remains committed to his promise of ensuring that every Nigerian, regardless of the economic situation of their parents, have access to quality tertiary education. Parts of the government’s plans to make sure all diligent students complete their education on time, notwithstanding their parents’ financial situation, include work-study, merit-based scholarships and grant.”