41 Nigerian Scholarship Students Sue Alabama State University Over Racism

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nigerian students sue alabama state university

September 10, 2016 – 41 Nigerian Scholarship Students Sue Alabama State University Over Racism, Claim They Were Overcharged Because They Are Blacks

In a legal case filed last week in a federal court in the U.S, 41 Nigerian nationals, many of whom are now Alabama State University alumni, alleged that the school overcharged them for books and meals, enrolled them in classes they never took, and more, all because they were black foreigners.

An ASU alumni, Jimmy Iwezu, who claims the university intentionally mismanaged millions from a scholarship fund set up by the Nigerian government that was paid in advance for every exchange student, claimed that: “They called us cash cows. I am a black man and I am proud to be black, but I felt discriminated against.”

The 37-year-old Iwezzu, who is a social work graduate, cited the school’s selfproclaimed autonomy to do whatever it wished with the seven-figure sum Nigeria prepaid back in 2013 for some 41 students to go to the school.

But the students’ Attorney, Julian McPhillips, who brought the lawsuit to court for the second time, the first attempt, back in April, accused the school of breaching its contract with Nigeria and was dismissed, suggested that ASU violated Title VI civil rights.

alabama state university racism

The students alleged they were shorted their deserved monies by ASU “because of their Nigerian national origin,” according to the lawsuit. McPhillips, who told The Daily Beast, contended that ASU hammered the students with exorbitant “billing” and they weren’t “being treated like other students” when the school allegedly inflated the costs of staples like books and room and board, and repurposed the funds to pay for the school’s “bond issues” and to help front costs for “a new stadium,” and, ironically, a centre for civil rights awareness.

“The school acted in a really disingenuous and selfserving way,” he said. While most college students are permitted to bargain shop for textbooks wherever they wish or dine at different establishments beyond the school cafeterias, the Nigerian nationals at ASU, according to the federal complaint, were boxed in.

The lawsuit claims “they were not allowed by ASU to spend this money, but instead the money was credited towards certain expenses the students incurred, or towards other expenses ASU incurred that were unrelated to the students.” “The school compelled us to buy books from the book store and eat only at the cafeteria,” Iwezu said.

“I tried to make them understand, ‘Hey, we don’t want to live in the dorms anymore, and we don’t want to eat our entire meals at the dorms.” He said greed-trumped reason, while also insisting that: “They want our money.” he said.

Iwezu said the surcharge to live on campus was raised specifically for him and his Nigerian counterparts. “They make us pay $3,000 (a semester) to live in the dorms, and that is more than a mortgage on homes in this area,” he added.

Back in 2013, a geography professor at ASU for almost three decades, Dr. David Iyegha, made a pilgrimage to Lagos State, where he served as the school’s ambassador to recruit fellow Nigerians with a mandate to attract its best and brightest to relocate to Montgomery, Alabama, for their higher education.

“I went to Nigeria with one other faculty member and recruited these students to be sponsored by the Nigerian Federal Government,” Iyegha told The Daily Beast. But today, he is withered in regret, saying: “I feel very, very bad because I was the one who was instrumental in bringing these students to the campus.”

Iyegha, whose son is currently on a Ph.D. track at ASU, feels like he let down so many promising prospects. He said: “(Nigeria) paid for everything, including their books, and all of the money is supposed to be given to the students so they can buy this or that. But the college refused to release any of that money at all for the past three years. “While the money was prepaid and guaranteed by the Federal Government, that didn’t grant the school carte blanche on how it was supposed to be spent,” he said.

“I asked them, ‘Why are you treating these kids like this? Why are you depriving them?’ and after talking to them at length, they told me they spent all the money and there is no money left.” An ASU spokesman told The Daily Beast that “since it’s pending litigation against our university, Alabama State University has no comment.”

[Credit: The Daily Beast]

9 thoughts on “41 Nigerian Scholarship Students Sue Alabama State University Over Racism

  1. this one is strong ooo..Eleyi gidi gan oo.

    let me start from the angle that we accredit too much respect to opposite colour even within ourselves we hear statement like “i can’t marry him is just too black for my likening” why won’t the white think they are superior. our ladies as turned bleaching into a certificate to go heaven they are no longer proud of the colour.. racism i say is being fueled by we blacks we don’t respect our colours..
    Hence i believe our government should be blamed a little for this occasion because they fail to know and seek for the welfare of their citizens they send for scholarship. if it were to be the white they would have logged a complain against the school and Nigeria government.. our leaders just sat down here doing nothing other than just sending money there anyhow without knowing what the money was for..
    However our government should try and maintain our schools here with this money they are wasting and give our institutions a new face and as for the alumni who launched the complain they should keep pressing on and get what they deserve for the current students and the upcoming

    #clueless human
    #IT_CAN_ONLY_GET_BETTER

  2. When will this racism stop. but white are treated well in Nigeria why they keep mistreating the black. to Nigerians stop going abroad let stay nd build ours. there good schools here.

  3. What was paid for and you were not given by the University? Was it part of the bargain that the students be paid cash to pursue alternative means of accommodation and feeding upon getting to ASU? If not, then why complain? The contract is between the Federal Government and ASU and they are to enforce the breach if any.
    Also, now the value of our currency has fallen and some States in the Federation are recalling their students schooling abroad, I think this lAwsuit will only draw unnecessary attention and inhibit the Government’s disposition towards making advanced payments for students subsequently sponsored to study abroad and that could work hardship for such students.
    I hope this action is well thought through so it will not adversely affect the policy of our Government as regards future scholarship awards for students studying abroad!

  4. Breathing down here with a sigh of disappointment. The racist treatment of our nigerian students in the university of the US state of alabama is a cause for concern.

    The United State of America is known for their longstanding racism and discrimination against the blacks living on their soil. If this kind of prejudice against the blacks is taking place in US now,I wonder what will eventually be the fate of our blacks when Donald Trump becomes president.

    Although I will not entirely shrug off the idea of giving scholarships to our nigerian students to further there education in abroad.

    As a developing nation,quite a lot of more advance and tremendous amount of skills could be learn by our students in overseas to shape their career perfectly.

    And the advance education and practical skills acquired in the developed world by our nigerian students when back home,could upgrade and contribute effectively to the learning atmosphere in our institutions across the country.

    The quality education acquired in abroad by our students by means of the same scholarship,could also enhance good performances when it comes to putting their acquired skills into use in several cooperate firms organisation or companies thereby providing them with job opportunities in the country amidst it scarcity.

    I think Scholarship for our students to fulfil there dreams of studying abroad for now is still very much needed here as a developing nation.

    However,I will partly blame our Government for their failure of not granting university of Alabama the carte blanche on how the money prepaid and guaranteed by our Nigerian Federal Government was to be spent and care for our student throughout the years of their studies in the school.

    This challenging stage of our students over their,should prompt our government now to call into question the racist attitude displayed by the Alabama university authority on why our student were deprived of their basic right in their campus. Our government should intervene and see to it that our students get their right back to them in order to avoid discouraging more of this students recruiters back home in nigeria.

  5. I do not know the terms of the agreement between the Nigerian government and ASU. Having studied and lived in the state myself, I know that funds deposited for academic and personal expenses of a student is refunded to that student at the end of every semester once the expenses are satisfied for that semester. I also know for a fact that colleges and universities in the state cannot dictate to a student where he or she can reside and or eat especially after their freshman year. It is and will amount to a great injustice to think the institution can spend the scholarship fund or balance any way they can and get away with it other than refund this money to the rightful owners, the students.
    Peter Okeke
    Raleigh, North carolina.

  6. IN THEIR MIND , WE ARE STILL A FUCKING SLAVES, AND WE ARE DULLHEAD ,

    SO, WHY ON EARTH ARE WE STILL BELIEVING IN THESE SO CALLED PINKIES.

    MAY I KNOW WHY WE CAN NOT STAY AWAY FROM THEM. WE ALLOWED OURSELVES BEING A SLAVE IN SPIRIT AND IN EVERYTHING , WE FOLLOW THEM LIKE A ZOMBIES.

    IF THEY PUT DOWN SHIT ON A PLACE FOR US TO EAT, WE WOULD EAT IT , BECAUSE OYINBO ASK US TO EAT IT .

    WE DO NOT LOVE EAT OTHER.

    IF I SAY SOMETHING , MY PEOPLE WOULD SAY TO ME , THAT I AM TALKING RUBBISH, BUT IF OYINBO SAY RUBBISH , MY PEOPLE WOULD SAY OH, OYIBO KNOWS THE BEST.

    I WOULD LIKE TO SAY TO YOU THAT , THEY ARE THE MOST IGANMUSHE, AND ARE VERY WICKED MORE THAN BOKOISISCONNIVING LITTLE SHIT.

    WE NEED TO PUT THEM IN THE DUNGEON AND CHAIN THEM FOR LIFE TO KEEP THEM AWAY FROM DESTROYING OUR SOCIETY. BECAUSE THEY ARE SILENT KILLERS.

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