Mugabe university 'not a priority' for Zimbabwean government

Higher education minister questions future of $1 billion scheme, as focus shifts to three other new institutions

January 31, 2018
Robert Mugabe, president of Zimbabwe

Controversial plans to build a new university named after Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s former president, are no longer a priority for the country’s government.

Amon Murwira, the minister for higher and tertiary education, said that the focus was now on three other new institutions: Gwanda State University, Marondera University and Manicaland University, according to a report in NewsDay.

But he said that the ministry is still looking at the idea of the proposed Robert Gabriel Mugabe University so that it can reach an “informed decision” on the $1 billion (£708 million) scheme’s future.

The government had previously planned to build the controversial university, which was to be funded by a government grant, on Mr Mugabe’s private property in the Mazowe district of the country’s Mashonaland Central province. It was to focus on science, technology and engineering.

Mr Mugabe was forced from power in November.

Mr Murwira said: “We are studying the university concept so that we can come up with an informed decision or position on the university. At the moment, our focus is on Gwanda State University, Marondera University and Manicaland University.”  

He added: “We need to come up with a clear concept on that project and see how we can take it up. At the moment, it is not a priority.”

holly.else@timeshighereducation.com

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