By Alfred Sasako
SIG-SPONSORED students at the University of the South Pacific in Fiji have been assured their monthly allowance would not be affected, students at the Laucala Campus told Island Sun yesterday.
They said the National Training Unit [NTU] director, Clement Tito, gave the assurance when he met with the students last Sunday.
“He flew over on Saturday and met with us on Sunday,” one student said.
“The Director assured us that our allowance would not be touched. It was a huge relief and we thank Island Sun for raising our concerns,” the student said.
The Fiji visit by Mr Tito followed concerns expressed by students with some suggesting that it would be better to return home rather than continue with their studies.
Last week students were given just $800 in monthly allowance each, causing not only concerns but confusion within the SIG-sponsored student community at the Laucala as well as other tertiary education campuses in Fiji.
After paying rentals of $550, the students were left with $250 in their pockets.
The country’s Education Attaché at the Solomon Islands’ High Commission in Fiji, Samantha Teitei Bob assured the students that their concerns would be looked into by the appropriate authorities.
The assurance by NTU director Tito appears to show a change of heart by the Government.
Three weeks ago allowance of SIG-sponsored students attending AMA in the Philippines were slashed by as much as 50 percent.
SIG-sponsored students studying in regional tertiary institutions were to follow.
The Government which on Monday passed its 2018 Budget has not made any announcement on any change in terms of the allowance.