Minister of Education Tasks DG to Reconfigure Higher Education Subsector

The Honourable Minister of Education, Mr. Douglas Munsaka Syakalima, MP., has charged the Director-General of the Higher Education Authority (HEA), Professor Kazhila C. Chinsembu, with the task of reconfiguring the higher education subsector.

Speaking when he officiated at the engagement meeting HEA had with public universities at Mulungushi International Conference Centre in Lusaka on Thursday, 25th April, 2024, the Honourable Minister congratulated Professor Chinsembu on his appointment as Director-General, and, immediately thereafter, told him to hit the ground running.

“Before I take my seat, allow me to congratulate the Director-General, Professor Chinsembu, we congratulate you and welcome (back) to Zambia after a long time,” he said, adding, “we are hoping that you will lead our nation, that you serve, in reconfiguring the state of higher education which has been a little bit limping.”

The Honourable Minister of Education further challenged the public universities in helping to chart a new course to make sure that universities behave like universities.

“I want to repeat what I said when I spoke on academic freedom 2 years ago of how to ensure that a university behaved liked a university,” Mr. Syakalima said, adding, “I am not ashamed to say what I am about to say now: in the last 10 years, there had been too much toxicity in our institutions of learning, from early childhood to our universities, (there was) too much politics.”

Mr. Syakalima stated that what was important and needed of public universities was to foster universities that were free of politics by ensuring autonomous universities.

“We don’t need politics in our school systems, it ended in 2021,” he said, continuing, “Anyone of you will be promoted on merit so there is no one who is going to have a job because you know somebody; you don’t know anybody.”

Professor Chinsembu was appointed as the Director-General of the Authority on 22nd April, 2024. He is a full professor of molecular biology and drug discovery. The University of Namibia promoted Professor Chinsembu to the rank of full professor on 1st September, 2020.

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