By KAIKO NAMUSA –
GOVERNMENT will this year accelerate the construction of education infrastructure and continue to establish new universities in all the provinces, President Michael Sata has said.
Mr Sata said the construction of universities was a major achievement for the country.
He said Government would speed up the completion of 52 secondary schools currently under construction, and would further upgrade 220 strategically located basic schools into secondary schools countrywide.
Speaking on his Facebook page yesterday, Mr Sata said under phase one, a total sum of K320.2 million had been allocated for the activity.
“Let me emphasise to you dear friends, the construction of the universities is a major achievement for our country which, once completed, will broaden opportunities of access to university education and help decongest our two public universities.
“It should be noted that our Government’s aim is to build a university in each province,” he said.
He said in 2013, the Chalimbana National In-Service Teacher’s College, Kwame Nkrumah College of Education and Copperbelt College of Education were transformed into universities.
Under phase two, the President said works would continue at Kwame Nkrumah and Mukuba universities, while phase one construction works would continue at Chalimbana University.
He said the construction of Robert Kapasa Makasa University for Science and Technology in Chinsali had entered phase two and would continue.
The Head of State said construction of phase one of Palabana University for
Livestock Sciences, which started last year, would also continue, while the construction of phase one of Paul Mushindo University had also started.
Further, the procurement process to engage contractors to design and build King Lewanika University at Namushakende in Western Province and Luapula University in Mansa had begun.
Mr Sata said the start the construction of three university colleges namely, University College of Mathematics and Sciences in Nalolo District in Western Province, the University College of Applied Arts in Katete in Eastern Province, and the University College of Technology in North-Western Province.
He said it was also worth noting that in the allocation to the Ministry of Education’s infrastructure budget of K404.3 million for university and other tertiary infrastructure was K250 million to kick-start the construction of student hostels at the University of Zambia and Copperbelt University.
On teacher recruitment and deployment of 4, 500 teachers in 2013, Mr Sata said 500 were on the Copperbelt, another 500 in Lusaka, 459 in Southern Province while Northern Province had 437 teachers.
Eastern Province had 441, Luapula, Western and North-Western each had 434, Muchinga had 420, while Central Province had 441 teachers deployed.