"Deferment Of Of Indebted Students Is Harsh And Inconsiderate" - KNUST Students' Parliament House


The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) Students' Parliament House has described the deferment of indebted students by the Leadership of the University as harsh and inconsiderate.


According to the Students' Parliament House, enforcing the aforementioned policy during this academic year is not feasible.


In a statement sighted by Thinknewsonline.com, it said "On the subject of indebted students being deferred, we would like to emphasize unequivocally that the decision to defer all defaulting students under the Student Credit and Debt Management Policy is, to say the least, harsh and inconsiderate, particularly at this time. We believe that enforcing the aforementioned policy during this academic year is not feasible. This academic year, a policy that was only announced and enacted after most students had already made preparations for the academic year and reported to campus will be ill timed to enforce"


"This academic year, a policy that was only announced and enacted after most students had already made preparations for the academic year and reported to campus will be ill timed to enforce. Furthermore, the University Relations Office and various forms of student communication did a poor job of informing students about the policy's requirements. Except for an impromptu flier with a little portion of the policy captured on it, no extensive measures were taken to address Students on this issue"


The statement further mentioned that it also suspects that some students might have pocketed their money and spent or gambled with them.


"This is the moment to put those details to good use, and the dishonesty of those irresponsible students will be exposed. A broad judgmental belief without a quantifiable gauge, on the other hand, would not be a step in the right direction"


Below is a copy of the release:


Deferment Of Indebted Students; A Call On Management And A Reminder To Government.

 The KNUST Students' Parliament House has been alerted of deferment notices that have been served to some students. The action was done, according to our knowledge, in compliance with the Student Credit and Debt Management Policy, which was implemented at the start of the academic year.


As a house, we'd like to convey our heartfelt gratitude to the university's leadership for their tremendous work in strategizing and steering our institution toward success.


We would like to express our gratitude to the University administration for implementing such a thorough policy to guide all students in the payment and settlement of all financial obligations owed to the University; the Student Credit and Debt Management Policy.


On the subject of indebted students being deferred, we would like to emphasize unequivocally that the decision to defer all defaulting students under the Student Credit and Debt Management Policy is, to say the least, harsh and inconsiderate, particularly at this time.


We believe that enforcing the aforementioned policy during this academic year is not feasible.


This academic year, a policy that was only announced and enacted after most students had already made preparations for the academic year and reported to campus will be ill timed to enforce.


Furthermore, the University Relations Office and various forms of student communication did a poor job of informing students about the policy's requirements.


Except for an impromptu flier with a little portion of the policy captured on it, no extensive measures were taken to address Students on this issue.             


We also suspect that some students might have pocketed their money and spent or gambled with them, yet the University took the information of each student's guardian or parents during the application procedure.


This is the moment to put those details to good use, and the dishonesty of those irresponsible students will be exposed.


A broad judgmental belief without a quantifiable gauge, on the other hand, would not be a step in the right direction.


We can't address this problem without taking into account the disruptions to the academic schedule caused by the UTAG strike, which has caused students to stay and spend longer than they intended before returning to campus. We must keep in mind that some students are self-parenting and may be obliged to spend in to their tuition  fees as a result of the extended academic calendar.  

 

Furthermore we ask that, what happens to the deferred Students ahead of the end of semester examinations ? Are they going to write? What happens to the part payments  students have made already, is the University refunding all back to the students? What happens to the exorbitant hostels fees Students paid? Is the University going to negotiate a balance refund from all landlords and hostel managers? Dear management, we know some few bad nuts among us are the reason we are where we are now, but there are more ways to get same results either than wholesale Deferment of students.


We state unequivocally that SRC has failed students in this matter on its core mandate of representation. The SRC is not expected to at a time like this, be shortlisting names and making part payments for just a select few when it is evidently clear the SRC is not in a position to make any significant payment for even the shortlisted applicants.


Two weeks after the introduction of the SRC Financial Aid, the process to settle the few selected persons has not yet been finalized. An SRC that has not yet delivered the KBN and the SRC bursary halfway through the academic semester whose processes were initiated last academic year is not one to be trusted to deliver swiftly on a financial aid bound by deadlines. 


All aside, in moments like this the SRC is not supposed to be a toothless bull dog but a strong arm of Student Interest advocacy.


The SRC is supposed to use the over 80,000 Students population as a negotiation tool and not shortlisting and interviewing Students on criteria best known to them.


How do you measure genuinety in this critical moment? What happens to the Students who couldn’t make the shortlists? The SRC  in this particular moment is operating below the belt. 

 

This is the time for our government to walk the talk, for our government to fulfill its promise, for our government to remember the pledge it made to we Ghanaian students. ‘NO GHANAIAN STUDENT

WILL REQUIRE A GUARANTOR TO ACCESS THE STUDENTS LOANS TRUST FUND’ This is the

time.. This is the right moment for our leaders to come to the aid of the six thousand 6,000 future leaders who are financially deprived today.


If indeed Ghana Card is the only requirement as the Policy provided, then we believe majority of these students will be saved through that promise. This is the time to make the STUDENTS LOANS TRUST FUND LOCAL SECRETARIAT ON CAMPUS A FUNCTIONING ONE. 


In this critical times, we as a house recommend that; 

1.  Management should consider using this academic year to educate students on the new policy so it can take full effect the next academic year. This is our request to our listening mother (VC).


2.  we wish to remind government on its own pledge that was made to the Ghanaian students. 


3.  We urge the SRC to be focus on its core mandate of advocacy and not their recent  media gimmicks.


4.  This is the time we plead with other student support schemes such as GNPC Scholarship Foundation, Cocobod scholarship, GETFund among others.  


The Management we know have played a number of motherly when it comes to issues of students welfare. At a time like this, all we seek for is an extension of the time to next academic year.


This they have done before, and we know as listening leaders as they have always be, they will consider this too.


It is our hope that swift action be taken to reverse this action within the shortest possible time to give students the concentration and all the attention they need to sit for the end of semester examination. 

 

Below are some pictures:





Story by: Joshua Kwabena Smith


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