Harare-Thousands of University student in Zimbabwe have dropped out of school owing to the recent tuition fees hikes by the Government.
Some students have even turned to prostitution and criminal activities, this was revealed by student representative councils from various tertiary institutions who were giving oral evidence on the impact of the fees hikes.
“We have seen quite a number of students dropping out of school owing to the increase in tuition and some have turned to prostitution in order to raise tuition fees which are way beyond the reach of many” said representatives from the University of Zimbabwe.
Bindura University, Student Representative Council (SRC) president Doctor Mahwata said the untimely fees increase was a recipe for disaster.
“Access to education has been jeopardized .This is the darkest hour in our education, a vaccine of violence. This is also a time bomb. We want fees to be in tandem with our parents’ salaries” said Mahwata
Midlands State University representative Liam Kanhenga said close to four hundred students had deferred with some engaging in artisanal mining.
“The fees hike is a death sentence to the students as almost 400 have deferred and some have even turned to illegal gold mining as a way of cushioning themselves from the harsh economic environment” said Kanhenga
The Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) president Takudzwa Ngadziore had no kind words for the Government whom he accused of prioritizing the Political Actors Dialogue (POLAD) at the expense of students.
“The increment has not only created intergenerational relationships but has put students at risk. One wonders why POLAD a grouping of leaders who did not garner much votes in 2018 getting huge amounts yet the groupings of people who are intellectually sound is in a crisis” said Ngadziore
The students called on the Government to take a look into the fees structure and engage stakeholders before making any announcements.
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