Rwanda: University of Rwanda Students Decry Delay of Their Allowances

29 September 2019

Students of the University of Rwanda, especially those from the College of Medicine and Health Sciences, have decried the delay by the Development Bank of Rwanda (BRD) in disbursing their monthly living allowances.

Speaking to Sunday Times, the students, most of whom stay at Huye Campus, said the delay is hampering their studies.

Each eligible student is given a subsistence allowance of Rwf35,000 every month.

"We rely on this money for transport, feeding as well as accommodation, among others. But without it, we are unable to meet our needs which greatly affects our academic performance," one of the medical students who preferred anonymity said.

He said that they had petitioned the university administration but nothing has so far been done.

"We have engaged our student leaders who in turn talk to the administration but all we are told is to wait as the issue is being handled. But there have been no tangible results from all the discussions," he said.

Fulgence Maniriho, the Head of Department of General Nursing Advanced Diploma, confirmed that there was an issue as far as the living allowances of students are concerned.

Speaking to The New Times, he noted that there was a time students in his department were complaining about their allowances. He spoke to the Dean of Students and some students received their allowances while others did not.

The University Guild President, Desire Mutsinzi pointed out that the issue was not with the university. He said he had written to the Ministry of Education over a month ago but nothing has been done.

Therese Nyirahabimana the Director of Students' Welfare University of Rwanda Huye Campus acknowledged the living allowances of students but said measures were being taken to see that it is solved as soon as possible.

"There have been irregularities here and there. A few students were skipped by the BRD system, but as soon as they realised it, they forwarded the issue to me," she said.

She, however, noted that the students who did not get the allowances are those who are still at school, but the issue will be rectified because BRD and the ministry are aware.

"The students should be assured of getting their living allowances any time soon," she concluded.

In a telephone interview with The New Times, Claudine Matata, the Ag Senior Manager Education Financing Department, confirmed that some students hadn't yet received their allowances but efforts were underway to see that they receive them as soon as possible.

She cited the cause of the irregularity as a result of the calendar year of the university where students are supposed to study for 10 months. But changes had been made saw study time increase by an extra month for some students, including those in the College of Medicine and Health Sciences.

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