Normal academic activities at both the Capitol Hill and Fendell campuses of the University of Liberia were paralyzed over the weekend following protest by several thousand unregistered students, most of whom are on scholarship, against plan by the UL Administration to end the registration process for 1st Semester 1016/2017.
The campus-based University of Liberia Student Unification Party or ULSUP is a major scholarship provider at the University, but reports have it that there is no money in its account to pay fees for beneficiaries, some of whom have already started finding money on their own to enroll for the semester.
The affected students disrupted regular classes last Friday after the UL Administration told them the Student Union has no money in the University’s coffers to pay fees for some 16,000 students as it has usually done over the years.
On Monday, 28 November the students barricaded the official vehicle of the President of the University of Liberia Dr. Emmet Dennis with license plate LUX 1 at the Fendell campus outside Monrovia with placards, threatening to disrupt the pending graduation, if they did not enroll for the semester.
They lamented that their colleagues could not be graduating from the University, while they are out of school because of closure of registration process, something they termed as unfair.
The students pleaded with the administration to re-open the registration process and provide ample time to enable them register for the semester, stressing that like their colleagues who are about to leave the University, they all matriculated into the institution to learn and get out.
Graduating seniors in queue to pay fees for the December graduation exercises were forcibly dispersed by the protesting students, who also went from class to class, disrupting lectures and daring instructors to teach while they are not in school.
The registration process, which started a month ago, was scheduled to have ended over the weekend with about 16,000 students yet to register. Unverified report reaching this paper says the administration is considering plan to extend the registration period to enable the students to register.
By Ethel A. Tweh-Editing by Jonathan Browne