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Nigeria Students Face Deportation Because Of School Fees | Diaspora Wahala

The Nigerian federal government has intervened following the expulsion of international students from the UK due to financial constraints.

Nigerian students at Teesside University were forced off their courses and reported to the Home Office after a currency crisis left them unable to pay their fees on time, as reported by the BBC.

A delegation led by a Nigerian ambassador is set to meet with the university's management to discuss the "unfair and unjust deportation orders," according to a spokesperson from the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM). The university, based in Middlesbrough, has indicated its support for the students and its willingness to engage in these discussions.

This development comes after the university blocked master's degree students from continuing their studies and reported them to immigration authorities due to late tuition payments. The severe devaluation of Nigeria's naira, triggered by an economic crisis, has eroded students' savings and disrupted their budgets.

A university spokesman told the BBC that not paying fees on time violated visa sponsorship conditions, forcing the institution to report the issue to the Home Office. The Home Office stated that sponsorship decisions lie with the educational institution.

Many students have reported severe distress, with some feeling suicidal due to the financial pressures and deportation threats. About 75% of the students facing these challenges are Nigerian, struggling with the high cost of living. Other universities, including Sussex, have also seen students affected by the currency crisis.

The Nigerian government's decision to step in followed a meeting between affected students and officials, including NIDCOM chair Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Nigerian High Commission UK, Ambassador Christian Okeke, and Yemi Soile, president of the Nigerian Students Union UK.

In this virtual meeting, students were urged to "remain calm and not take laws into their hands," and a plea was made to the university for "justice and fairness."

One student, Jude Salubri, who received a deportation notice, appreciated the intervention but doubted its effectiveness. "I think it will be a persuasive appeal, but I'm not sure they can force the university to do anything," he said. "Our lives are still in limbo while we wait for decisions to be made."

A university spokesman reiterated that the institution is offering individualized support to students affected by the economic downturn in Nigeria.



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