The opposing views have emerged on the long awaited University of Malawi (UNIMA) students’ fee hike vigil as fourth year students are distancing themselves from the decision and are praying for the indemnity from consequences of the vigil.
The University of Malawi Students Union (UMSU) and Polytechnic Students Union (PSU) in retaliation to the decision by registrar’s office to hike tuition fees have been planning a vigil to take place on unspecified dates.
In a letter dated July 7th 2016, addressed to the Principal, the fourth year students from Polytechnic have asked authorities to spare them from any consequences that might befall the college should students demonstrate on the matter.
“We would like to express our dissatisfaction in the manner in which UMSU and PSU intend on handling things by means of vigils at a crucial time such as this. Let it be known that we do not condone nor will we be a part of such,” reads the letter.
It further indicates that the Polytechnic is already more than one academic year behind schedule as a result of vigils and demonstrations.
“Being finalist in our respective courses, we have been victims to many closures resulting from vigils and demonstrations. Given that we are about to write our final year exams, we write to your office seeking protection in that should the planned vigil result in closure, we final year students must not be affected and thus go on write our final examinations. It further reads.
Earlier, the Civil Society Education Coalition (Csec) Executive Director Benedicto Kondowe said that the hike will lead to many dropouts.
“This will affect many students and we should expect more dropouts than could have been,” said Kondowe.