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#454289 - 12/29/12 08:19 AM Hike in UB semester fees in January 2013
Marty Offline

UB students sign petition to prevent hike in semester fees in January 2013

Hope Amadi

Hundreds of students of the University of Belize are facing a significant hike in semester fees starting in January 2013 when the government says it will stop paying subsidies to the school. But in these tough financial times, that’s a blow that many of them are unable to handle and so the Student Government President, Hope Amadi, is leading a petition to prevent the increase. The students are seeking to have the government of Belize, in particular the Ministry of Education’s decision reversed and allow the subsidies to continue. Amadi told News Five today that the petition has received vast support.

Hope Amadi, Student Government President, UB Belmopan Campus

“Due to the increase of fees that the students have to pay come January, we have taken it upon ourselves to make sure that we get students to support our movement that the government should not stop paying the subsidy that they are paying for our students and our students have responded to that petition by signing. We have about a thousand signatures that have been signed already.”

Delahnie Bain

“So what will be done now with the petition?”

Hope Amadi

“I hope we don’t have to go to other means of trying to resolve this issue but that the government will understand that the students don’t want to pay and take back the responsibility because that is what they owe to the students of this university.”

Delahnie Bain

“So has the petition been forwarded to the government?”

Hope Amadi

“Not, yet but we’ve made them know when we were on air we made mention of it, we showed the sample of it to the masses and right here also I’m making known to the government and everyone who is watching to understand that we have a petition signed by the students and this is an indication that they don’t want to pay extra come January 2013.”

Delahnie Bain

“So how many students would be affected by this?”

Hope Amadi

“So far, from the information I’ve gotten from the administration, we have about five hundred and fifty give or take, students that got admitted this semester that will start January. But I don’t have an appropriate number of students who finished their associates and are going for their bachelors or students who deferred their admission and are starting in January. All these students will be affected. So we have almost about I believe more than six hundred students, more than seven hundred students that will be affected by this increment.”

Channel 5

A $350 increase to be implemented

Amadi says the affected students would be paying upwards of three hundred and fifty dollars more on their school fees and there are many who would not be able to afford it if the government cuts off its subsidies.

Hope Amadi

“If the government of the day would say to its people, I am broke, I cannot pay anymore; what would happen to the people? Who will have the money? I don’t have it and I believe the students don’t have it and that is why we are saying the government should—2006 when the increment came to be, the students out rightly said we are not going to pay. The government said okay we’re going to take up the responsibility and they took up the responsibility. We thank them for that and we want them to continue paying. You can’t give up on students now when everybody—cost of living is going up every day, everything is going down, down, down and you want the students to take on the responsibility of paying extra? No, we cannot. We cannot, not right now we cannot do that and we’re asking the government to think about it—no, thinking about it has passed and we want the government to take it back and say they’re gonna continue paying.  My fellow students, you guys have to understand that the time has come. We have to stick together or we get withered away. And when we stick together we can achieve anything we want to achieve. This is a test that you and I will have to face and if we want to prove to the government that we have matured enough, this is the time we have to stick together and fight for what is good for one another.”

Channel 5

#454582 - 01/04/13 07:52 AM Re: Hike in UB semester fees in January 2013 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

UB Students Say They Will Boycotts Registration Over Increased Fees

Tomorrow is orientation and registration for over 500 new students at the University of Belize. They will have to pay a $150.00 registration fee, because the government - which used to pay it - has been forced to discontinue the subsidy.

The University's Student Government says the new students will have to pay $550.00 dollars in registration fees - where current students only pay about $185.00. For months the student government has been making the rounds to say the imposition of the fee on new students is unacceptable. But nothing has happened - and tomorrow is registration day. Today the President of the Student Government along with a former president and a fellow president held a press conference to say they will resist the new fee:

Hope Amadi
"Each student will be paying almost $360 additional per semester, where can we find that money. Tomorrow we have new students coming in for orientation and registration. We are not registering; I am not registering. If the fees remain the same way i am not registering and I am urging students that the fees should not increase show solidarity - do not register."

"Everybody keeps asking the same question over and over; Hope if the Minister doesn't change, what are you going to do, what are you guys going to do? Don't worry, our actions you will see but we won't say it and we better keep it that way."

Moses Sulph
"If the government, I may not quote him directly but if the government who is the entire entity of a country, who has all the resources at hand cannot afford this increase to continue - how will it then be able for poor people who are making $175 per week to afford this increase."

Hope Amadi
"14% Unemployment rate in the country, almost 45% poverty rate in the country - what do you want more? Do you want to make everybody beg? We cannot go on the streets and start begging."

Moses Sulph
"We are not basically trying to in any way have a fight with the Minister of Education. We are basically appealing to his heart to his inner person to his conscience to do what is right for the people of this country - the students of this country."

Hope Amadi
"Hon. Faber, please, I am pleading to you; if I may use that: on behalf of the students. Remember what you promise; you said that the University of Belize deserves more. This is the time to show that you really care for the students."

Moses Sulph
"We have 4% of our population that is educated on the tertiary level and that is the lowest according to the United Nations report on education in 2008 in the entire region of the Caribbean and Central America."

Micah Goodin
"For every young person that is not allowed a fair opportunity to attain an education I hold you responsible and if you are tired of being held responsible then roll over and make space for someone who is more competent, determined, honest and hardworking."

Amadi says he has signed petitions from students. Again, returning students do not have to pay the new fee.

Channel 7

Government subsidy for UB comes to an end

Aside from the increase in rates hitting the business community, university students are also facing a fee increase. That has prompted action by the National Student Government of the University of Belize. Its President, Hope Amadi, told the media today that they are urging incoming students, preparing for enrolment during the second semester, to boycott registration. The boycott comes in light of a proposal by the Ministry of Education to terminate government subsidy to the university.  The allowance began in 2006 to avoid a previous intended increase in student fees.  That recommendation was directly opposed by the former UB student government led by Moses Sulph, forcing the ministry to absorb the increase.  With the allocation ceased, an estimated five hundred and fifty new students will now have to bear the additional expenses.  Today, during a press conference, members of Nation Builders, an organization primarily comprised of past and present students of UB, made their position clear – they will not be participating in the upcoming registration.

Hope Amadi, National President, UB Student Government

Hope Amadi

“Nobody is happy and I don’t think, even though you’re listening to me today, I don’t think you’ll be happy with what is going on at the campus.  Fourteen percent unemployment rate in the country, almost forty-five percent poverty rate in the country, what do you want more?  Do you want to make everybody beg?  We cannot go on the street and start begging.  As it is stated, the University of Belize is the last hope for those who are less privileged in the country.  What do we mean by that?  We are saying that the forty-five percent poverty rate, these are the group of people who go to the University of Belize and you still want more out of us.  We have appealed to the government, we’ve asked the minister to think about his action and reconsider, amicably, to come up with ways that this problem could be resolved, but yet nothing is happening.  If the subsidy is removed, if we are to pay the subsidy, each student will be paying additionally, almost three hundred and sixty dollars additionally per semester.  Where can we find that money? We want that when you come in for Monday, registration starts tomorrow.  Tomorrow we’ll have new students coming in on Friday for orientation or registration.  We are not registering.  I am not registering.  If the fees remain the same way I am not registering.  I am urging students, I am urging the university students who think or who deem it necessary that the fees should not increase, show solidarity.  Do not register.  Let’s make the minister understand that we cannot pay the increase.”

Channel 5


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