NAQEZ demands for reopening of CBU
By Staff Reporter
National Action for Quality Education in Zambia (NAQEZ) has demanded for the reopening of Copperbelt University next week as its continued closure cannot be justified anymore.
Professor Luo indefinitely closed the university after students fought battles with the police as they rioted after failing to sit for their examinations.
In a statement, NAQEZ Executive Director Aaron Chansa said his organisation disagreed with the position taken by the Ministry of Higher Education regarding reopening of CBU.
The demand by the Ministry for CCTV cameras to be installed at the institution before re-opening is ill-timed and not a lasting solution to the causes of riots at CBU.
Chansa said that while security cameras are important at a learning institution like CBU, the government must first address the acute funding of higher education in the country.
He said even with CCTV cameras all over, it would not arrest the financial affliction currently engulfing universities in the country.
“In order to meaningfully increase funding to higher education and ultimately improve the quality of the graduates, NAQEZ has proposed the following that Government abolishes TV Levy and introduce Education Levy which must be specially managed to strictly improve standards of education in Zambia,” Chansa said.
He stated that there also need to delink budgetary allocation of Ministry of Higher Education from that of General Education; suggesting that the Ministry of Higher education receives 7% funding from the national budget while General Education should be getting 13% budgetary appropriation.
NAQEZ has further demanded for the reinstatement of the meal allowance to all students who get loans because it was law and a requirement, especially that most of the students were from very poor families who cannot afford living expenses at a university.
Chansa noted that if funding to education continues to dwindle, NAQEZ predicts instabilities in the running of universities in Zambia.