Wednesday 7 June 2023


everal Lupane State University (LSU) students may have to repeat the academic year after the university denied them the opportunity to write their final examinations as they had not fully paid their fees.

The university took a firm stance that only those who are permitted to write their examinations must be registered, meaning they must have paid their tuition fees in full.

Students who spoke to CITE, on condition of anonymity out of fear of victimisation, confirmed that they failed to write their final exams last week as the institution demanded full payment of fees, which they could not afford to pay at that particular time.

“I did not write the exams because at the examination venue, lecturers were asking for our student numbers to check if we had paid or not. I was told I owe the university ZWL$218 000 and that I could not write the exams. I was chased out of the venue even though I begged to be let inside. I didn’t have any money with me at that moment,” said the student who, with other affected students, was left pained by the university’s decision.

Students said LSU wanted them to pay 80 percent of fees before examinations commenced and if they failed to do so, they would not write them, which meant a ‘fail’ and having to wait until the next semester to repeat the module.

“The challenge of missing examinations is that the module you did not write will not be part of the modules taught in the next semester.  There is however a special examination that is in July but the Head of Department said we cannot write the modules we missed under that facility because the special examination accommodates those who missed exams if they were sick,” said another student.

“So if we do not write in July we are not sure if we are going to graduate this year, as results for September are published next year,” added the student.

Another student said the university’s decision was unfair as not everyone could afford to raise fees in one go.

“This will affect my academic results because I was supposed to graduate this year. Now I am not sure if the university will allow us to write the special exams in July,” said the student.

Reached for comment, LSU Director of Marketing and Public Relations, Zwelithini Dlamini, said students knew they had to be registered for them to write examinations.

“Only registered students are bona fide students of Lupane State University and therefore are allowed to sit into the examination venues. Those that have not registered are not allowed to sit for examinations as they are not part of the University community,” Dlamini said.

Dlamini stated that the barring of non-registered students is a control measure to make sure those who are not registered, do not sit for exams.

“The barring of non-registered students is a control measure to eliminate unknown elements from infiltrating the examination process,” he said.

The university spokesperson claimed LSU had a work-for-fees programme for students who have financial challenges.

“Please note that the University also has a work-for-fees programme whereby students who have financial challenges are assigned manual work in exchange for the payment of fees. They are also given some money for their sustenance,” Dlamini said. CITE


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