STUDENTS of the University of Abuja (UniAbuja) would be paying N11,000 to register their company with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), The ICIR has learnt.
This is coming weeks after the Vice Chancellor of the university, Abdul-Rasheed Na’Allah, mandated that no student would be allowed to graduate without registering a company with the commission.
Registering to have a CAC document means that a business can operate validly in Nigeria. The certificate of incorporation issued by the commission means that the business is authentic, reputable and legally recognised. This also grants the business easier access to secure loans from financial institutions.
The ICIR reported that the institution has partnered with the Abuja Chamber of Commerce to train students on raising firms of their own rather than depending on searching for jobs after graduation.
“Know that no student will graduate from the University of Abuja without having a company registered with CAC, it’s now a law in this university. You cannot graduate from this university if you don’t have a company that you’ve registered. You could have even done business with the company because you might have registered with the company a year or two before you graduate,” he said.
In a separate interview, with Cable the VC said that the motive behind the law is to change the students’ mindset on job hunting, adding that over 1,000 students have registered since the pronouncement was made.
However, The ICIR reached out to students at the university to enquire about the registration process.
Students who spoke to The ICIR said that N11,000 is the basic payment for the registration; however, since they (the students) pay through the university’s Remita portal, an online payment and transaction website, the total deduction is N11,280.
The students also said that upon registration, the payment must be made first to generate the Remita Retrieval Reference (RRR) code, which would lead them to a registration page where credentials containing the profile of the students and business name would be filled.
The ICIR also learnt that the university also permits students to register outside the school designated portal but the certification must have been received. Also, the university has provided a soft loan from the institution’s Microfinance bank for students who are willing to kickstart their business immediately.
Abdulwahab Abubakar, a 400-level student of the English and Literacy Department, told The ICIR that the new law would help students become dependent on themselves rather than seeking a job after graduation.
He said, “The VC is trying to eliminate loitering of students after their graduation and eliminate poverty in the life of students because it is no more news that after graduation there is no more job.”
He, however, said there are among students on the instruction being mandatory rather than voluntary.
Another student, Saliu Asmau, a student of Agricultural Economics, told The ICIR that while he intends to go into agribusiness after graduation, the CAC registration should not be mandatory, stressing that the deadline for final-year students is short.
“The school management has not taken into consideration the financial strain on the lives of many students to give a short time deadline for the payment, especially for the outgoing 400 level students. The financial implication of this amount on most students is gross, and many students have to take a loan to meet the stipulated deadline.
“Students who have no interest in engaging in business activities should have been given the option to waive the payment or participation in the CAC business registration exercise,” Asmau said.
Also, another student, Ibrahim Olayinka, a student of Banking and Finance, said that while the law is very commendable, most students only registered to avoid penalties and not with the intention of establishing a company after graduation.
Olayinka, who hopes to use the CAC certificates after her graduation, believes that proper planning should have been laid before the instruction was pronounced.