The Ministry of Education Science and Technology (MoEST) has rebuffed the call by University of Malawi (UNIMA) to rescind the fee hike in public University, saying it’s not responsible.

On Wednesday UNIMA students organized a peaceful demonstration in the capital Lilongwe against fees hike for both mature entry students and normal entry students.

The students gave MoEST 72-hours ultimatum to address the issue face unspecified action.

Reacting to the ultimatum delivered to them through Lilongwe City Assembly Chief Executive Officer, MoEST said the responsibility of hiking university fee is in the hands of the University council therefore it cannot intervene on the matter.

In a letter seen by this reporter addressed to University of Malawi Students Union leadership, Secretary for Education, Science and Technology Lonely Magreta says the University Council, not the ministry, is responsible for the management of the university in accordance with Unima (Amended) Act of 1998.

In May, Unima hiked fees in Public University especially for mature entry students.

The announcement saw Chancellor College students being ordered to pay MK900,000, K1.4 million for College of Medicine students, MK950, 000 for Polytechnic students and MK1 million for Kamuzu College of Nursing.

As this was not enough, UNIMA also last month hiked fees for normal entry students from MK55, 000 to about MK500,000 to students studying at CoM, MK380, 000 to students studying at Polytechnic, MK320 at CHANCO, and MK340, 000 from current MK275,000 at KCN.

Meanwhile there are fears that many students will drop out of school.

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