Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu has said that the Abia State School of Nursing and Midwifery, Umuahia remains one of the cheapest of its kind in the country.
The governor disclosed this to journalists in Umuahia on Monday.
He said that the reasonable fees charged in the school made it attractive and the demand by prospective students higher than any other similar institution in country.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that some students had accused the school management of exploitation and called for the governor’s intervention.
The students alleged that the school received applications from admission seekers in excess of available slots and compelled them to pay N500,000 each as school fees.
They further alleged that after six months, the students were mandated to pay another N30,000 for the school to facilitate their admission into the university, which never happened.
But the governor said that no student was meant to pay any other fees, apart from the one approved by the government.
He said the students paid N260,000 before his administration came in but it was reviewed downward to N215, 000 to make it affordable for parents.
“This is all the students pay, I mean those coming in after Preliminary Training School (PTS).
“No student pays any other fees to the best of my knowledge, except examination fees or when they are going for experience, which is dependent on where they are going.
“It is tuition-free, once you pass PTS.
“Every other state charges between N700,000 and N900,000, yet people there don’t complain,” Ikpeazu said.
Meanwhile, a reliable management source has dismissed the allegation by the students, saying that the school was being guided by Standard Operating Procedure.
The source told NAN on the condition of anonymity that every fund collected from the students goes into the state account.
It further said that it was not possible for anyone to say that they paid money to an individual.
The source challenged any persons with such claims to come forward with evidence to prove them.
It said that the process of admitting students into the institution was similar to that of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board, where millions of students would purchase forms, write examination but only a sizeable number would be offered admission.
The source said that the examination into the school was being conducted by the Council of Nursing in Abuja, which also determines the cut off mark.
According to it, once the council is through with both the entrance examination and oral interview, the list of successful candidates would be published.
“It is neither done by the principal nor the school management.
“Once you are successful, the Ministry of Health will issue you an admission letter, just like JAMB does.
“The school is alloted 75 students, but if for instance, about 300 persons sat for the examination, is it possible to take everybody?,” the source asked. (NAN)