A document detailing high hostel fees at the University of Ghana's Legon campus for the 2023/2024 academic year has sparked controversy.
The document, purportedly from Ghana Hostels Ltd, dated Thursday, July 13, outlines approved rates per bed ranging from GHS 4,928 for four students sharing a room with shared facilities to GHS 35,320 for an air-conditioned single room with en-suite facilities.
This, many say represents increases of 200-300% compared to current rates.
Reacting to it, Dr. Clement Abas Apaak, Ranking Member on Parliament's Education Committee, described the proposed fees as "exorbitant".
Dr. Apaak called for urgent national dialogue to find sustainable solutions to student accommodation challenges.
"Exorbitant to put it mildly. How many parents can afford to pay these outrageous amounts for hostel accommodation for their wards?
“What happens to the poor? Information is that it's same in other Universities. We need a national conversation on accommodation for students,” Dr. Apaak wrote in a tweet on Friday, July 14.
Students and education stakeholders have expressed outrage at the increases, arguing that many students will be unable to afford a university education.
The said national dialogue will probably look at the need for affordable student housing to ensure access to tertiary education, especially for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.