Government to prioritise stalled infrastructure projects at UNZA

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GOVERNMENT has pledged to prioritise the completion of stalled infrastructure projects at the University of Zambia (UNZA).

During the 53rd graduation ceremony at UNZA in Lusaka, in a speech delivered on his behalf by the Permanent Secretary responsible for Administration, Noriana Muneku, Minister of Education, Douglas Syakalima announced that contractors would resume work on the halted projects by the end of June 2024.

She highlighted that the Ministry of Education is actively working to reactivate stalled hostel projects, which are projected to be completed by the end of 2025.

“The government has allocated resources in the 2024 National Budget specifically for student accommodation, addressing one of the university’s most pressing needs.” she said

Muneku acknowledged the significant debt burden that UNZA faces, particularly to institutions like the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA) and the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA).

She assured that the government is committed to resolving these financial challenges through ongoing stakeholder engagement.

In his earlier remarks, vice chancellor Mundia Muya urged the government to pay more attention to the higher education sector.

Professor Muya praised government’s efforts in strengthening primary and secondary education, However, lamented the lack of parallel development in the university’s infrastructure and pointed out that the existing infrastructure at UNZA is old and in dire need of upgrades.

The ceremony saw the graduation of 5,414 students, including 139 PhDs, 1,457 master’s degrees, and 3,818 undergraduate degrees.

The event was held under the theme “From Academic to Self-Sustainability: Embracing Innovation and Industrialisation in the Digital Era.”

By Elesani Phiri

Kalemba May 27, 2024

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