Students from the country’s six public universities have asked the Higher Education Students’ Loans and Grants Board to suspend disbursement of loans until their concerns are addressed.
Through their respective unions, the students want government to adjust upwards their upkeep and stationery allowance from K100 000 to K240 000 per semester.
In their letter dated December 20 2021 signed by respective student union leaders addressed to the board, the students expressed dissatisfaction with the board’s handling of their concerns.
The signatories are students from the University of Malawi, Malawi University of Business and Applied Sciences, Mzuzu University, Kamuzu University of Health Sciences, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources and Malawi University of Science and Technology.
In an interview on Thursday, Public Universities Students Unions task force acting chairperson Lloyd Thalavuh asked the board to treat their matter with urgency, saying prices of goods and services have drastically gone up.
He said: “We don’t want to interfere with school calendars, for example, Mubas is expected to open on 24th January of which they will need the tuition for registration and the upkeep for their [students] survival.”
In a written response , the board’s acting executive director Prince Phwetekere acknowledged receiving the students’ petition to withhold the students’ loan disbursement.
“We will respond accordingly when we are done with consultations with relevant authorities,” he said.