IN each ministry a senior official can be found not doing a constructive job. His role is twofold; draft rules and regulations that create hurdles and bury all projects and programs developed by the government for the welfare of citizens under complicated bureaucratic procedures.
Supporting domestic scholarship students is one such example. The bureaucrats have adopted a step-motherly attitude toward students enrolled under such programs – they deprive them of their remunerations.
The government has so far spent billions of riyals on scholarship programs both inside the Kingdom and abroad. It spends SR1000 per domestic scholarship student to meet the student’s educational needs. No doubt this huge government investment is instrumental in strengthening the resources of local universities. However, these universities believe that government funding is only to support them and not the students. Therefore, local universities levy as much as SR15,000 as annual tuition fee on students.
I don’t know if there is a need to explain something that is not worth an explanation. The domestic scholarship student is similar to a foreign scholarship student. The student may not have been able to go abroad for personal reasons. Many young women who do not have a male guardian to accompany them also opt to study within the Kingdom.
The important thing here is that the young men and women continue their studies in various specializations at universities in the Kingdom under the scholarship program with the knowledge and permission of the Ministry of Higher Education.
There is no doubt that these students are talented and have a strong desire to acquire education, and are thus useful to the country like other students. Then why do we not pay them the allowances that we give to our foreign scholarship students?
Is the deciding factor in such cases simply an exit stamp on the passport? Why does the Ministry of Higher Education allocate such huge amounts for the domestic scholarship students and yet these students are forced to pay a large amount of money as tuition fee from their pockets?