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Liberia news

“Beneficiary of Blood money”

-SUP describes Sen. Taylor
Students at the state run University here have described Bong County senior Senator Jewel Howard Taylor as a beneficiary of “blood money.” Mrs. Taylor, the extreme wife of jailed ex-president Charles Taylor, as acting chair of the University Board of Trustees recently announced an increment in the tuition fees by US2.00 per credit hour making it a total of US4.00 per a credit hour for the undergraduate level. This is so far the least amount being paid here as compare to other privately run universities in the country.

But despite being the lowest fee per credit hour, students at the state run university say they are indigent and poor and therefore cannot afford to pay such amount per credit. The campus based Student Unification Party of SUP at a press conference said it was unfortunate and nationally embarrassing that Mrs. Taylor would champion such an increment drive.

The students said it was also unfortunate that after amassing wealth with her imprisoned husband at the expense of the Liberian people, Sen. Taylor would now want to  see thousands of students drop out of college so that their sons and grand children can have the opportunity to stir the affairs of the state in the near future.

They claimed that Sen. Taylor accompanied her husband, Charles Taylor rained terror by declaring 14 years of senseless civil war on the Liberian people with the selfish intent to extort the resources of the country undercover for their personal benefits and that after acquiring such benefits, she now has the guts to push for fees increment for poor students.

“We hope Senator Taylor who is one of the lead campaigners the for tuition increment will also advocate cutting down the astronomical salaries and incentives she is currently receiving from our taxes. We believe that if some of these unnecessary expenses are diverted to the University of Liberia, there would be no need to increase tuition,” the student group said.

The student group insists that the state run university is not a profit-making entity or public enterprise. They warned that those who think that the state-run institution is a revenue-generating arm of government must rethink. “If you want to make profit, we encourage you to go to NOCAL, Maritime, LPRC, Freeport of Monrovia, etc.,” they said, wondering what is big about providing US$29m to run a university of 31,000 students with four campuses, over 1,000 faculty members and 1,200 staff, when the Legislature with 103 Lawmakers has a US$38m annual budget. 

“We are compelled to state that the annual budget of just 30 senators [is] US$11,448,938.00m. While our people lack access to quality education and live in acute poverty, our leaders are becoming millionaires,” the students lamented, expressing the belief that if some of the “unnecessary expenses” were diverted to the University of Liberia, there would be no need to increase tuition.

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By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor-Edited by Othello B. Garblah

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