ABOUT 1 300 students at the National University of Science and Technology (Nust) were barred from writing ongoing examinations due to non-payment of tuition fees.
According to sources, the hall in which the exams were being written was empty yesterday after most students were turned away.
“When going to write exams, one swipes their bar-coded student card and when it reflects on the computers that you are in arrears, you are refused access into the exam hall and turned away,” said the source.
Exams started on May 7 and the source said the most affected were those not on cadetship as they were required to pay their tuition in full. The government pays half of the tuition of those on cadetship.
“Since exams started on May 7, the university has been clearing students to write exams if they paid a certain amount and when they failed to pay, they were barred. What it means is that some people wrote part of the exams and then stopped due to failure to pay. It’s more like a write-as-you-pay scenario,” said the source.
The source said the 1 300 students would be forced to repeat the courses whose exams they missed and those who were set to graduate this year would have to wait for another 12 months as they would have to wait for next year’s second semester to complete the missed course.
Nust was in the news two months ago when its academic staff had stopped teaching evening classes and masters’ students due to a dispute over unpaid allowances.
However, the university’s administration and Nust Educators Association signed a memorandum of agreement to stop the strike after the university committed itself to pay the outstanding allowances.
Nust spokesperson Felix Moyo could not be reached for comment.