TSLB must reconsider decision
Wednesday 13th January 2021
The Tertiary Scholarship and Loans Board (TSLB) decision to suspend support for students wishing to enroll in MBBS and Dentistry this year, without a clear basis, is ridiculous.
National Federation Party MP and Vice-President Lenora Qereqeretabua said that this move will disproportionately affect students from poorer socio-economic backgrounds who, despite having worked hard to attain the required marks, would not otherwise be able to afford the tuition fees for these programs.
“Reportedly, a Bachelor of Medicine at FNU costs approximately $89,000 over six years and a dental degree costs around $78,000 for five years”.
“Where are families expected to get these amounts in the current economic situation and at such short notice?”
“Why are students wanting to pursue these noble professions penalised when Government repeatedly brags that no one will be left behind?”
In response to my written question in Parliament last August, the Health Minister revealed that the doctor to patient ratio for Fiji stood at 1:1,040 as of 31 August 2020.
“If Government is saying that support is not being provided because Fiji meets the WHO recommended doctor to patient ratio of 1:1000, why are we still bringing in doctors from overseas?”
“Government must be forthright with the people of Fiji and state the real reasons for the removal of support for these programs and we call on Government and TSLB to revise this decision.”
NFP MP & Vice-President