US billionaire’s gift to graduates fuels student dept debate

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US billionaire Robert F. Smith

 

NEW YORK – When the American billionaire Robert Smith announced to students graduating from historically black Morehouse College that he would pay off their student loans, he put himself at the centre of one of the 2020 US election’s key issues.

While the cost of Smith’s surprise gift announced on Saturday to Morehouse’s 396-strong class of 2019 is not yet known, the body’s student debt is thought to reach $40 million.Smith, a Texas businessman who is the wealthiest African-American, has been applauded for his generosity, but his gift also generated jealousy among the many Americans struggling with huge student debts.

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