K1,500 CBU penalty ruffles NDC
Written by Millennium on August 12, 2019
NCHIMUNYA CHIDAKWA writes
THE directive by the minister of Higher Education that Copperbelt University (CBU) management surcharge students a penalty fee over the damage caused to public and personal property during riots has not gone down well with an opposition political party.
Minister of Higher Education Brian Mushimba last week announced that all students of CBU would pay a surcharge amounting to K1,500 and minimum of K500.
Every student will be required to pay as they resume classes on the August 19 2019.
Dr Mushimba said the penalty fee was towards the repair of both private and institutional property damaged during the riots that led to the closure of the university.
However, NDC national youth chairperson Charles Kabwita said in a statement he had appealed to Dr Mushimba to intervene in the matter.
Mr Kabwita said Zambia was passing through a tough economic times and the charge on the students was unnecessary and unfair.
He believed most students would not afford to pay the fee and return to school on time.
Mr Kabwita said CBU had over 10,000 students which meant management would rake in over K15 million through the charge.
He condemned the student riots of April 2019, but believed the property damaged, both private and institutional, was far less than what management was demanding.
“Dr Mushimba should sit down with CBU management and come up with a minimum fee acceptable by all.
“As NDC, we commend his efforts to pacify the unresolved issues at public learning institutions. He should not fall in the same trap of his predecessor, Nkandu Luo, whose movement from the ministry was most welcome,” Mr Kabwita said
NDC had done a lot to lobby for the opening of CBU.
Students should now take the opportunity on the reopening of CBU to reform” he said.
Mr Kabwita urged students to desist from riotous behaviour and damaging both institutional and private property.