The government to influence the abolition of tuition fees, as the UoM has money

Today, the Centre for Civic Education (CCE) submitted an initiative to the Prime Minister of Montenegro, Duško Marković for the abolition of tuition fees for students of specialisation studies in 2020/21 academic year.

With the Initiative, the CCE requested the Prime Minister to undertake all measures and to influence the abolition of the Decision on the number of students for enrollment in postgraduate specialist study programmes of UoM for the 2020/21 academic year and the amount of tuition fees for those study programmes in the part that prescribes that students of specialization studies must pay 1,000.00 EUR for enrollment in postgraduate specialist studies.

We remind that this decision was made by the Managing Board, at the session held on 2 and 3 July  2020, and that five members of that Board are the representatives of the Government, as the founder of UoM.

The CCE requested that the current state of affairs, which put many social categories at a disadvantage including students and their parents, should be acknowledged. Given that certain categories have already received support, there is no reason for the Government not to support students as well. In essence, the mere voting of such a decision, with the participation of the representatives of the Government was contrary to the publicly stated position of the Government that it would help various groups to overcome this crisis more easily.

The CCE notes that the UoM has funds for these students since at the end of 2019 it had as much as 13,420,400.00 EUR of funds deposited in his accounts, which is far more than 2,299,000.00 EUR which, according to our estimate based on the planned number of students, it intends to earn from the tuition fees of these students. Also, our data indicate that UoM zealously spends all funds from the state budget while keeping it from its revenues, hence savings must be redirected to those for which UoM should exist, although current UoM’s leadership is more self-centered than oriented towards students.

The CCE expresses hope that the Prime Minister will prioritise and support this Initiative, and that the representatives of the Government in the Managing Board of the UoM will initiate an urgent change the part of this Decision, i.e. that the tuition fees for students of specialist studies in the academic year 2020/21 will be abolished.

Snežana Kaluđerović, Senior Legal Adviser