The management of the University of Ghana and the students’ representative council must form a committee to negotiate private hostel prices on campus, the ranking member on the education committee of parliament, Peter Nortsu-Kotoe has said.
Reacting to the reviewed rates for hostels on campus, which ranges from GHS4,928 per person in a four-room hostel to GHS24,362 for a one-person room, the Akatsi North MP told Valentina Ofori-Afriyie on Class91.3FM’s mid-day news, 12 Live, on Monday, 17 July 2023: “Tertiary education in Ghana is becoming too expensive and if care is not taken, it will be out of the reach of the ordinary Ghanaian”.
“This is too bad for us”, he noted, adding: “If you look at the rates, the highest is GHS24,000. It is really outrageous. We need to do something about it”.
The rates for international students range from GHS8,576 for a four-room unit and GHS35,320 for a one-room unit.
Mr Nortsu-Kotoe said the committee discussed the issue with the management of the University of Ghana last year.
“The academic user fee or let’s say the fees they pay is not too much but that of the accommodation, you can’t go there. And, GHS,8000 a year if you are four or so in a room, how many parents can afford it?” he wondered, noting: “So, we need to talk about it, we need to do something about it”.
“So, we were advising the university that although private individuals have put up their properties on the university’s campus, the university itself and the students’ representative council, should form a board or a council so that whenever they want to increase the fees of these facilities, they must sit down and discuss it, they shouldn’t do it arbitrarily because you have put it up on somebody’s property and that is the land, so, the land is equity, so, even if they are going to pay, the owners of the land, which is the university, and the students, who are the beneficiaries, must form a committee and then determine the increase that should become acceptable to all of them, but if you let only one person to decide, or the property owners to decide, they would increase the facility user fee to this amount”, he said.
He said: “In actual fact, many students will just go and sleep on the streets or they may even have to go and hire accommodation somewhere far away from the campus and you can even imagine the dangers that are involved”.