Just like the foreign missionaries, who really turned around the education sector to accommodate even the poor, many were of the belief that the new generation missionaries should at least emulate their predecessors. But to the surprise of many in their congregations, the school fees are such that are not affordable to their members, and in some cases the churches raise offering among their congregations to build the schools only for the pastors to complete the schools and deny them the chance of sending their children to such schools.
People of these church-owned schools are more expensive than other universities that are not affiliated to any church. We did some research into some supposed missionary tertiary institutions in Nigeria and the range of the amount an average student pays per session or semester. Our findings were interesting.
Winners’ Chapel’s Covenant University
It is regarded as one of the best universities in the country, built on expansive land somewhere along Idi-Iroko road, Ota, inside the premises of the headquarters of the Living Faith Church Mission or Winners’ Chapel as it’s called. Though the founder and leader of the church, Bishop David Oyedepo had at different time stated that he did not collect money from the church to erect the structure, many are of the opinion that the claims of the bishop may be far from the truth as he was not known to be doing any other work apart from the one he’s doing in the church. The school which was built with the assistance of people God sent to help the ministry, as most pastors claim, was supposed to help give quality education to children of every member of the church, but the case is that the church’s school ended up being one of the most expensive schools in the country, with school fees ranging from between N300,000 and N450,000, which makes it not a school for the child of an average member of the church.
Baptist Church’s Bowen University
It is one of the oldest church-owned universities in Nigeria. The university, which is in Iwo town in Osun State, was built by the Nigerian Baptist Convention headed by the Secretary-General, Reverend (Dr.) Olasupo Ayokunle. Like other church-owned universities, it was the belief that it would help educate ordinary members of the church as well as the rich. But it seems the school is now a school for the rich, as the school fees are between N400,000 and N500,000.
Christ Apostolic Church’s Joseph Ayo Babalola University
It is one of the newest church-owned universities. Information revealed that the church, led by Pastor E H L Olusheye, collected offerings and donations from the congregation towards the building of the school, only for the school to become something that is beyond the people that contributed towards its construction. The school fees, it was revealed, go for nothing less than N300,000 per session.
Anglican Church of Nigeria’s Ajayi Crowther University
Coming from a church that has a huge number of the society’s so-called elite, many would have expected them to have done all in their power to make quality education accessible to members of the church as they were mostly products of cheap or even free, quality education. But investigation revealed that the school’s tuition fee goes for between N350,000 and N500,000 per session, thereby dashing the hope of many members of the church who felt Ajayi Crowther was a product of free education and that the institution named after him would provide affordable, quality education for them.
Catholic Church’s Madonna University
It is the oldest church-owned university in Nigeria and it belongs to the oldest church in Nigeria, the Catholic Church, a church known for its philanthropy and its care for the needy. Many would have expected that the church would make education easier for the congregation but investigation revealed that the fees at the church-owned Madonna go for between N300,000 and N350,000.
Apostolic Faith’s Crawford University
This university which belongs to a church which is known for it principle on the way things should be done and with the population of most of the members tilting comfortably towards the average income earning ordinary Nigerian, people would have expected they would take into consideration their congregation while fixing the school fees but the N350,000 or more, depending the course of study, does not seem to justify this position.
Redeemed Christian Church of God’s Redeemers’ University
The church is one of the largest in the country. There is a saying that there is a Redeemed Church every one or two poles to another, which invariably means it is a church for the masses who cannot afford to send their children to any of the private schools in town. But it is appalling that the church has chosen not to put into consideration the majority of its congregation by competing with other schools out there. It has fixed its school fees for between N325,000 and N400,000 per session, which makes it not a school for the masses, against what the church is to the people.