From Chris Gaga, Makurdi
Management of Benue State University has directed the shutting down of the University with immediate effect.
This followed Monday’s closure of the University’s entry gates by protesting students who were expressing concerns over their grading point.
In seperate Press Statements signed by the Registrar of the University, Dr(Mrs) Mfaga Modom said all attempts to stop the students from blocking the gates failed. It directed the students to vacate the campus immediately.
DAILY ASSET reports that students of the University on Monday barricaded all entry gates of the school protesting a revert to 5 – Point Grading System as recommended by the National universities Commission(NUC).
The students who were in their large numbers carried placards with varying inscriptions like; “No 5 points no school”,
“We want peace not war”, “Aluta Bomb, no 5 points no school fees”, “We want to meet with NUC”.
The Spoke person of the students, Comrade Kingsley Obora said they were demanding immediate implementation of the 5 – point grading system as directed by the NUC.
“The protest today is simple. Students are tired of dialoguing with management concerning the issue of 5 Grading Point System, because we have used almost a year to dialogue with management on this issue. And we felt this is the only avenue for management to hear us, that is why we are here today, to call on management to hear our cry. If we don’t do this, then most of the students will be withdrawn for no just cause.
So we are saying management should revert to the five point grading system that other Universities are grading on already,” Kingsley said.
The students expressed fear that if they were graded on 4 point system, majority of the students will be withdrawn because of poor CGPA.
” Four point grading system only have advantage for first class. In 4 point grading there is no pass degree. As it stands, so many people have been withdrawn.If you go to Economics Department, over 100 students have been withdrawn, Sociology have already sent their children home. If you go go to Sociology, the least person has 0.37 CGPA on 4 point grading system, where as when you convert it to 5 Point, that person will be on 1 point which is pass degree. All we are asking for is go back to 5 Point grading point,” One of the Department leaders, Moses expressed.
But in a swift reaction the Benue State University Vice Chancellor, Prof. Msugh Kembe through a statement signed by the Registrar said management was aware of students grievances and has already complied with NUC directive by reverting to 5 Point grading System with effect from 2018/2019 academic session.
It noted that the closure of the University gates by students on account of the issue was unwarranted.
“Management of Benue State University is aware of the grievances of students, especially as it relates to the Five (5) Point Grading System. It is in recognition of this that the Benue State University Senate constituted a Committee to consider the appeal by the students for the recalculation of their previous results from Four (4) Point Grading System to Five (5) Point Grading System and submit its recommendations.
“The Committee requested and received memoranda from the Universuty community including the Students; met severally and its report is to be considered at the forthcoming meeting of Senate scheduled for Thursday, 5th September, 2019.
“Students must acknowledge the fact that the University had already complied with the directive by the National Universities Commission (NUC) by reverting to the 5 Point Grading System with effect from the 2018/2019 academic session.
“In the interim, the University Management met the students and informed them of the efforts of Senate and appealed for their patience to enable the Committee to complete the assignment. Management also, through the Dean of Students issued a circular informing the students of its efforts.
“Management wishes to reiterate that it can only consider their appeal when the report of the Senate Committee is received.
“Management wishes every student to note that it cares for their academic success and will never deliberately distort their academic performance and results,” the statement reads.
The University Management appealed to students to be law abiding and respect constituted authority, policies and properties of the University and allow due process to prevail.
In 2013, the NUC directed all Universities to adopt a 4 point grading system. NUC however, instructed four years after that 5 point grading point be reverted to.