President signs varsity Bill

President Mugabe

President Mugabe

Zvamaida Murwira Senior Reporter
President Mugabe has assented to the Marondera University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology Act while the Finance Bill was gazetted and would soon be tabled in Parliament for debate. The Marondera University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology Act seeks to establish a university expected to address the growing demand for use of technologies and application of sciences.

The Bill was passed through Parliament last month. The Finance Bill seeks to give legal effect to various policy measures introduced by Finance and Economic Development Minister Patrick Chinamasa in his mid-term fiscal policy review.

The publication of the Act was made by Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet, Dr Misheck Sibanda in a Government Gazette published yesterday. “The following law, which was assented to by His Excellency the President, is published in terms of Section 131 (6) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe,” read the notice.

In terms of the Bill, one of the objectives of the university will be to specialise in agricultural sciences and technology and the advancement of knowledge through teaching, research and learning and the nurturing of the intellectual, aesthetic, social and moral growth of the students. “No test of religious or political belief, race, ethnic, origin, nationality or gender shall be imposed upon or required of any person in order to entitle him or her to be admitted as a member of staff or student of the university or to hold any office therein or privilege thereof,” read section six of the Bill.

Clause 7 confers the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe or his nominee as the Chancellor of the University. The Bill also provides for how the university council would be constituted and its functions. The establishment of a university in Marondera will bring to nine the number of institutions of higher learning owned by Government and is part of fulfilment of an objective to have such institutions in all provinces.

Other universities are the University of Zimbabwe, Midlands State University, Chinhoyi University of Science and Technology, National University of Science and Technology, Lupane State University, Bindura University of Science Education, Great Zimbabwe University and Zimbabwe Open University. Zimbabwe prides as the first in terms of literacy rate in Africa owing to a deliberate effort by Government, led by President Mugabe, to enhance education delivery across the country.

From a single university at independence in 1980, the country has seen the number of Government-run institution of higher learning growing and enrolment increasing.