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Cabinet approves plan to unbundle UNZA into 5 Colleges


President Edgar Lungu's Press Aid Amos Chanda (left) stressing a point during a press briefing which was held at Government complex in Lusaka.Looking on (middle) is Information and Broadcasting Services Minister, Kampamba Mulenga and Health Minister DR Chitalu Chilufya (right). Picture by SUNDAY BWALYA/ ZANIS
President Edgar Lungu’s Press Aid Amos Chanda (left) stressing a point during a press briefing which was held at Government complex in Lusaka.Looking on (middle) is Information and Broadcasting Services Minister, Kampamba Mulenga and Health Minister DR Chitalu Chilufya (right). Picture by SUNDAY BWALYA/ ZANIS

CABINET has approved the restructuring of University of Zambia (UNZA) into five colleges to improve efficiency and effectiveness in the operations of the institution.
Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services Kampamba Mulenga said the decision was arrived at during the13th Cabinet meeting held at State House on Monday.

Ms Mulenga said this during a press briefing where she was flanked by special assistant to the President for press and public relations Amos Chanda and her Health counterpart Chitalu Chilufya.

“UNZA has become inefficient in its management due to its current size which has resulted in operational problems, and this has in turn resulted in a huge debt burden, inadequate staff and infrastructure, perennial strikes by students and lecturers, and this has compromised the quality of education,” she said.

She said the five colleges which UNZA has been reconstituted into are medicine; education; agriculture and veterinary medicine; engineering, mines and minerals; and humanities and arts.

Ms Mulenga said during the same meeting, Cabinet approved the new financing strategy for financing public universities which, among other things, states that Government will liquidate all debts owed by three public institutions.

“The Minister of Higher Education Nkandu Luo will soon announce other university reforms approved by Cabinet,” she said.

Below is the full briefing

Health Minister, DR Chitalu Chilufya (R) stressing a point on the newly launched HIV /AIDS mandatory testing and counselling that President Edgar Lungu launched on Tuesday. Listening (middle) is Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Kampamba Mulenga and Presidential press aid Amos Chanda (left). Picture by SUNDAY BWALYA/ZANIS
Health Minister, DR Chitalu Chilufya (R) stressing a point on the newly launched HIV /AIDS mandatory testing and counselling that President Edgar Lungu launched on Tuesday. Listening (middle) is Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Kampamba Mulenga and Presidential press aid Amos Chanda (left). Picture by SUNDAY BWALYA/ZANIS


LUSAKA,(15th August 2017) – His Excellency the President, Mr. Edgar Chagwa Lungu called chaired a 10-hour long Cabinet Meeting on Monday, 14th August, 2017 starting at 09:35 am to 19:35pm. Cabinet discussed 14 agenda items and the following were, among others, the key decisions made:

1. Change of the Commemoration of the National Voluntary Counselling
and Testing (VCT) Day to Commemoration of the National HIV Testing Counselling and Treatment (HTCT) Day: Under this Item, Cabinet approved the change of the commemoration of the National Voluntary Counseling and Testing day which has been taking place on 30th June since 2006 to commemoration of the HIV Testing Counseling and Treatment day in line with the current global and national policy direction. The national event shall now be held each year on 15th August and commemorated countrywide.

The change from the VCT Day to HTCT Day directly supports the United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) 90-90-90 targets of ensuring that 90 percent of all people living with HIV know their HIV status, 90 percent of people with diagnosed HIV infection receive sustained combination antiretroviral treatment and 90 percent of all people receiving ART have viral suppression.
This strategy will lead to reduced HIV related illnesses (morbidity), deaths (mortality) and HIV transmission a move critical towards having an AIDS free generation.

Cabinet directed that the Ministry of Health should develop and implement a strategy aimed at sensitizing the general public on the new measure adopted by Government for the routine HIV Testing, Counseling and Treatment. Further to this, the President announced a the inaugural HTCT Day on August 15,2017, that HIV Testing, Counseling and Treatment, is now a matter of public policy. It must be emphasized here that there will be adherence to the medical confidentiality and attendant privacy available to every person.

2.?Restructuring of the University of Zambia (UNZA) into Colleges: Under this item, Cabinet approved the restructuring of the University of Zambia to be re-constituted into five (5) University Colleges, namely: College of Medicine, College of Education, College of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, College of Engineering, Mines and Minerals, and the College of Humanities and Arts. Government has decided to restructure the University of Zambia in order to improve efficiency and effectiveness in the operations of the institution. This action is provided for under the Higher Education Act No. 4 of 2013, Part III Section 13 (3). The University of Zambia has become inefficient in its management due to its current size. This has resulted in operational problems that have manifested in a huge debt burden, inadequate staff and infrastructure for teaching and learning as well as perennial strikes by lecturers and/or students, which have compromised the quality of education. In terms of the student population, the University of Zambia has 23,000 students, Copperbelt University, 12,041 and Mulungushi University, 4,830 students.

3. New Financing Strategy for Public Universities – Liquidation Debt and Measures to ensure Financial Sustainability in the Running of UNZA, CBU and Mulungushi University: Under this Item, Cabinet approved the new financing strategy for financing Public Universities which, among other things, Government will liquidate the statutory as well as personnel related debt owed by the three Public Universities. It is noted that the environment for higher education in Zambia has changed significantly. With the growth in the national population, the demand for higher education has continued to rise. The Honourable Minister of Higher Education will soon publish a full paper and issue a comprehensive announcement on the university reforms Cabinet approved.

4. Petroleum (Exploration and Production) (Amendment) Bill, 2017: Cabinet approved a Bill to amend the Petroleum (Exploration and Production) Act of 2008, in order to have legislation which will provide for increased investment in the sector that will contribute to national development. The Petroleum (Exploration and Production) Act of 2008 is inadequate leading to the under-exploration of the country’s petroleum potential. Launching Zambia’s first-ever major oil and gas exploration by the British firm, Tullow Oil Limited last week, President Lungu promised that Government would quickly amend the current law to allow for greater exploration work in the petroleum sector. The gaps in the current law include, among others, unclear mode for Government participation in the sector, lack of clarity of the fiscal regime, and absence of clear licensing system for blocks reserved for Government. These factors coupled with lack of institutional capacity have made the country uncompetitive to attract investments.

5. The proposed Bill, therefore, is expected to provide for:

(a) Development of a licensing system that clearly shows how Government will participate in exploration and production;

(b)?Development of a clear and robust fiscal regime that will be both attractive to investors and fair to Government; and

(c)?Enforcement of contractor obligations on existing licenses by requiring them to either fulfil those obligations or relinquish the blocks in accordance with the terms of the respective licenses.

6.?Petroleum Infrastructure Modernisation/Reforms: Under this Item, Cabinet approved the following:
(a) Engagement of an Independent Valuator and Consultant to assess the operations, assets, and structure of Indeni Refinery to determine the modernisation and optimisation upgrades and associated costs;
(b) Disposal of majority shareholding of Indeni Refinery based on the recommendations in (a) above to an equity partner; and
(c) Mobilisation of loan financing for the replacement of 911 km of 8-inch pipeline with a 12-inch Diameter pipeline.
Cabinet is of the view that participation by the private sector in the management of Indeni would facilitate increased supply of petroleum products in the country.

7. Electricity Sub-Sector Reforms: Under this Item, Cabinet decided that a Task Force be established to look at the operations of ZESCO and propose to Government the best way forward in improving the operations and management of the electricity utility company.

8. The Public Procurement (Repeal) Bill, 2017: Cabinet approved the introduction of a Bill in Parliament to repeal and replace the Public Procurement Act, No 12 of 2008.

9. This is aimed at enhancing mechanisms that will increase public procurement efficiency, transparency and accountability, as well as strengthen the regulation of public procurement in Zambia and also to incorporate international best practices in public procurement. The Bill is envisaged to be presented in Parliament during the next sitting, scheduled for September 2017. The Public Procurement Act, No.12 of 2008 is inadequate in dealing with many issues of public procurement. Therefore, it needs to be amended to provide for a more efficient, effective, transparent and accountable public procurement system. In addition, the amendment is necessary to address issues that are not provided for in the existing legislation such as high value procurements, assignment of procurement contracts and benchmarked prices for common user items.

10. Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing National Risk Assessment Report: Cabinet approved the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing National Risk Assessment Report for Zambia. Government and other stakeholders will now be more targeted in the application of scarce resources in the fight against Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism and other financial crimes by employing a Risk Based Approach to ensure that measures to prevent or mitigate money laundering and terrorist financing are commensurate with the risks identified.

11. The Rural Electrification Bill, 2017: Cabinet approved a Bill to amend the Rural Electrification Act, No. 20 of 2003 in order to strengthen the mandate of the Authority by addressing the identified gaps in the Authority’s engagement in income generating activities, conduct of affairs and activities, and protection of whistle blowers among other pertinent issues.

12.?The Employment Bill, 2017: Further, Cabinet approved the introduction of a Bill in Parliament to repeal and replace the Employment Act, Cap. 268; the Employment Act (Special Provisions), Cap. 270; the Employment of Young Persons and Children Act, Cap. 274 and the Minimum Wages and Conditions of Employment Act, Cap. 276 to revise and consolidate the currently fragmented pieces of legislation regulating aspects of individual labour law so as to provide an improved environment for the protection of the fundamental principles and rights at work, whilst promoting productive employment and economic growth. The law regulating employment and labour matters has not kept abreast with the emergence of modern forms of employment trends as a result of growth in the private sector as a major employer.

13. Industrial and Labour Relations (Amendment) Bill, 2017: In a related matter, Cabinet approved the introduction of a Bill in Parliament to amend the Industrial and Labour Relations Act, Cap. 269, so as to enhance freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining.

In winding up the Meeting, Cabinet also discussed the progress the Committee of Ministers which is chaired by Her Honour the Vice-President was making in the mobilisation of resources and construction of the markets. Cabinet was informed that as at 11th August 2017, K12, 821,000.00 had been pledged out of which K10, 436,500.00 has since been received.
Hon. Mulenga Kampamba


    • How many UNZA graduates are in cabinet again. I hope cabinet knows that they are not the alpha and omega in Zambia. Yesterday it was HIV tests, today it is UNZA. Tomorrow it will be Mushota and Nick.

    • There’s nothing you’ve changed apart from names.Changing from School of Medicine to College of Medicine won’t change anything……..”the difference is just the same”.

    • I got 19 point in five subjects and qualified to go to natural sciences at UNZA and that’s right I turned the offer down.

      Anyone that studied there now – history won’t judge you well, you studied at a college then.

      Same as NRDC – huh karma !



    • Nansoni vilibe. Ati treason making our country look back to the rest of the world and you want to talk about education. You can’t even define what treason, trying to sound and look learned.

    • The way these pf guys come out when issuing pronouncements, like Zambia is sending a man to the moon or the country wants to put a satellite in space, did they need all these three to make such announcement.

    • @Mushota I’m really surprised that they offered you a place at UNZA with 19 points! You must have opened up quickly to have qualified! Or your Uncle was Michael Sata!

    • This is far from solve the problem because name change does constitute to financial enhancement? This is where education is needed among our ministers like the information minister. On education credentials its a big problem with PF government because most of the people are the Kaponya type. They are in government on a passport not otherwise

    • “Unbundling” sounds like a term Mutati would come with to frame some half-thought-out idea.
      The major issue at UNZA is inadequate funding. Under the current administration model, the administration costs are shared.This would ordinarily result in cost saving.
      The proposal to unbundle the schools will result in duplication of administration systems. And up goes your costs. So what you have is an incerase of costs.What have you solved?

    • All the above three are Bemba- this government is really imbalanced!!!! . What happened to the brilliant Lozi intellectuals? The outstanding Tonga professors? the Intelligent Lunda – some of the best early pilots of Zambia hailed from there, The marvelous and hugely gifted ‘in the brain faculty’ Luvales, the outstanding Kaonde and Mbundas not forgetting the magnificent Lamba people and many other beautiful ‘ethnicities’ of Zambia?

  1. How many UNZA graduates are in cabinet again. I hope cabinet knows that they are not the alpha and omega in Zambia. Yesterday it was HIV tests, today it is UNZA. Tomorrow it will be Mushota and Nick.

  2. We brought this onto ourselves by not preparing our children properly for the future academically and life wise. Some of the main reasons for this outcome include corruption in the school system and political meddling. Most of the cabinet members have questionable backgrounds and credentials. Some have even been publicly prosecuted for various crimes including academic fraud. Remember you reap what you sow. I always wonder how they account for the money they get paid. I for one, I would not employ most of them even for free because they don’t have anything constructive to offer to the Zambian people.

    • Lungu and his bunch of takatakas are on a drunken rollarcoaster, drunk with power. This is the equivalent of swapping chairs on the sinking Titanic.

  3. Oh come on, what is the fuss about this. This is an old system of managing institutions that grow big for efficiencies. University of London has many colleges, that issue University of London degree and these colleges are ven better and have excellent reputation Kings College , London Business School and many others. So Nothing new here and no point in throwing mud at the Government. This is a right move and should be supported by all. The UNZA you went to had only 5 000 students and that is why people with 19 points in 5 subject could make it, today you can’t . Today we are talking about 23 000 students and very competitive to get in.

    • How can a university that admits 23,000 students be more competitive than the one that only admits 5,000? UNZA of today is allowed to admit anyone who has 5 o’levels. UNZA of then was dependant on the available bursaries and Mushota couldn’t have been admitted with 19 points. The cut-off was 15 points.

    • We’ve got bigger universities down here in SA but we arent becoming ” inefficient in its management due to its current size which has resulted in operational problems,”
      We arent getting as confused as you in Lusaka Why? Poor skills in Zed?

    • Joust wondering how an institution could move from admitting 5k students to 23k without any significant infrastructural change? How are they managing?

    • with respect your comparisons, I won’t go into details of the differences as many people have already contributed above. Let me state the fact again, you reap what you sow. Zambian universities are not to big to warrant the comparisons you’re making. The main problem is that African problems as stated in my post above require African solutions. What you started is pretty obvious. Its like telling a beautiful girl that she is beautiful. To have an impact one has to come up with something else innovative and not just uprooting ‘copy/pasting’ colonial concepts. The basic idea might work, but our context “corruption in the school system and political meddling” is different.

  4. Students will be still at the same institution though, meaning they will be making same riot noise. The rationale not clear. Hope they did wide consultation

  5. The major problem at the University of Zambia is funding. This so called unbundling won’t make the funding problem go away. In addition management at UNZS need a paradigm shift. Both government and UNZA management look at the institution like they do a secondary school. The focus has been about getting students enrolled, providing lectures, conducting exams and concluding academic calenders. No meaningful research takes place. The only output of the university is graduates. Universities should produce knowledge in embodied form (graduates) and embedded form (artifacts, procedures, processes). I don’t see how this unbundling will help produce more knowledge.

    • UNZA’s funding problem is exaggerated. The bulk of its problem is mismanagement. Lecturers survive on perdiem. Go to Siavonga Lodges and Hotels and you will be shocked how many UNZA internal meetings are held there. Even professors spend time hunting for paid for workshops and conferences. Post graduate students spend longer time than is possible because no one has the time to read their research.
      School such as education supplement the lavish expenditure of central administration. Ministry of General Education funds parrarel programmes at St Eugene, Lusaka University, ZAOU and UNZA. While the other three have used the money to develop courses and problems, UNZA spends the money on endless workshops “to Dev the modules”.

    • When UNZA opened on 1965. A crush programme that required 5 O levels as entry requirements was put in place. UNZA is now 50years plus but still under a crush programme. Why?


  7. From a chronological perspective, financial problems became an issue when the national economy collapsed. Causes of the economic collapse are well documented. The response to the economic collapse was quite timely but demography patterns had profoundly changed. Enrollment continued to grow but funding was not in sync. It became unsustainable for UNZA to continue business-as-usual with chronic financial problems. Delayed payments to suppliers and staff made academic corruption surface from nowhere. The new structure will prevent anti-academic conduct, enhance competence and minimize waste. If the new system faces new challenges, then the challenges will also be met with resolve until efficiency is attained.

  8. it’s a good system ….this is one way of shunning from chain strikes etc. Each college will be responsible enough with quality of education and competence. Let’s try it.

  9. Gh it all makes sende when you link every announcement, HH released, ZRA increased revenue collection, ZAMTELL unprecedented growth, the 13 points above. Collectively they add up to what IMF needed to give bailout.
    They are due toward end of this month and bailout money comes in october.
    Wztch this space

  10. I am so disapointed with the calibre of bloggers here who can’t appreciate what Governmnet has resolved for our Zambia. Thumbs up our leaders for these solid resolutions i hope we monitor and implement ASAP. UNZA to be disbanded into colleges is long overdue, these colleges will have full fledged administration to recruit fire and decide on major issues other than depending on one central body ALA. I will even come back to teach at unza once these reforms are implemented. ZESCO , INDENI all are good resolutions , working government …zambia forward bane (NOT QUOTING UPND SLOGAN, BUT JUST THE MEANING)

  11. They have no shame talking about HIV testing when none of them have publicly done tests especially this miss Kampamba and her lazy boss.

  12. More details are required. As usual no consultations. Someone smokes pot ,wakes up and makes radical changes.Today we are getting rid of basic schools. Back to secondary schools. Implementation becomes difficult and you are still stuck with the basic schools structure. Today we will unbundle unza into colleges. What will be the structure of these colleges ? Separation package. Workers remuneration, Pensions, roles of Vice Chancellor, administrative structure, certification. Administration of Exams.Makerere University is a big University .What practices can we learn from one of Africa’s oldest University. At the Rate we are going I won’t be surprised to wake up with a Knife pointing at my trousers. Male Circumcision Compulsory Un zip we chop.What a government.

  13. Opposition in Zambia like politicking over everything. These are very progressive steps and in line with global trends. But wait, you will soon hear vision less opposition members opposing and offering no solution.

    The government should ignore these jelousy empty tins and proceed and develop this country. They even oppose construction of good roads and later enjoy driving on them without shame.

    Improvements being proposed are not for PF or Edgar alone, but for us the people of Zambia.

    So think before you condemn everything.

    • The University of Manchester has a student population of approximately 40,000. It was first established in 1824. It runs on a budget of almost a billion sterling pounds, not Zambian Kwacha, and it is one of the best universities in the world, 2016/17 ranked 34th in the world.

      Without confounding you with more information, the university has not been fragmented. So what trends are you talking about. The issue with our Zambian university is that it is not well run and too much political meddling.
      So the demerits of this proposal is that you shall have executive structures for each college instead of one as it is and that is an added cost, for which you kick yourself in the teeth when you talk of limited resources.
      I know this may not sound right, but try to bring an expatriate maybe…

    • We dont oppose road construction we oppose the flawed tender and procurement process that does not encourage cost or value engineering. A road in Zambia with no drainage should not cost 1million per kilometre.

  14. Dear Jay Jay ECL actually took a test though the results have not been made public please see file post from LT yesterday. Now turning to this ‘new’ system this is a modern way of running university education. In the past we run our university like one big secondary school, we should long have ‘split’ them up and that’s why using university land to build a mall was not wise the mall could have housed some of the colleges. Its not uncommon to find an entire university city/town we need to gravitate towards that..

    • Where is the funds going to come from since the govt can not sufficiently fund one institution with even 60% funding.

  15. UNZA has become inefficient in its management due to its current size which has resulted in operational problems.

    UNZA is probably one of the smallest universities in terms of student population. There a lot of efficiently run universities with students populations of well over 15000!!!

  16. And so, all the five colleges will be house under the same dilapidated university building….presumably each college will have its own vice chancellor, registra,admin staff and so forth. What a cranked up government. I suggest that all ministers and the president go for mandatory HIV testing as signs are there that all might not be well.

  17. The isue here is not politics.Its whether enough studies have been done to warrant the changes. You will see the reaction from lectuers and students.
    Look at the Curriculum changes which have been done in schools with the academic and vocational pathways. The policy can’t be followed through as it is not understood. What of ICT in schools and the confusion surrounding the implementation. Even the HIV compulsory testing hasn’t been fully researched. On one hand you are unbundling Unza to improve efficiency on the other hand you want to combine TVTC with Luanshya Trades and business college to make a polytechnic to improve efficiency.These are confusing signals. You want to introduce Nuclear power in Zambia, You don’t have any college which produces nuclear scientists or engineers…

  18. In fact developing countries are moving away from nuclear power due to safety challenges and nuclear waste management.But that’s the direction you want for Zambia, because you want to sound educated. I see total confusion at Unza through this policy. Failure to manage 25,000 students. Watch the space.

  19. @Mushota you are the chief liar of this site thats why you claim to a PhD that you have failed to show us despite many of us challenging you? How possible that you were offered a place in natural science at unza with 19 points in 5 subjects. This was not in Zambia but some where else? Those who believe in this lady begin to doubt her from today because of her consistences in what she says. She is an PF thug who believes in tribalism.

    • Although Mushota is a sycophant, the issue of her being accepted at UNZA with 19 pts depends on how old she is. Way back, it was possible to enter UNZA with those grades. It was not uncommon for people with 15 to 20 points being admitted to UNZA. But the population now has grown and you have to get 5 points in 5 subjects to be guaranteed a place.

  20. This is how efficiently western world colleges are,but I can see a lot of you you have no clue….too bad,but for a change I support the government on this one….

  21. I’m sorry if I come off as ignorant but why is the Zambian cabinet the management of the university? Really? The entire president is micro-managing a university? Please tell me if I’m wrong! Why then do we have a university administration? What do they do? How can the cabinet know more about what a university needs than the university’s own management? This is disturbing. This government is truly on a dictatorial roll!

    • Unfortunately, we have been conditioned to think that the president and his cabinet have ALL the wisdom that is needed to run EVERY institution in the country. No! All these institutions should be independent but audited for quality, efficiency and effectiveness! I cannot conceive of a government that wants to manage every aspect of citizen’s lives! This is worse than Russia and China, which are some of the worst countries in dictatorship.

  22. this means each university college will have its own chancellor, vice chancellor and management will be easy. They are not colleges but university colleges offering certificate, diploma and degree. I dont know what haooens to the school of post graduate school.

  23. I s anyone aware of a consultative process with stakeholders and experts in this unbundling of the University of Zambia or is it just govt acting unilaterally?

  24. What UNZA needed was to be upgraded into a higher University and research institution with capacity to produce Masters and PhD graduates. Then other colleges should produce bachelors graduates that should feed into UNZA.

    • UNZA is a medium sized university. It shouldn’t be a problem to manage this organization. If the colleges will be like business units or divisions of a large organization and headed by a Dean, that will be fine. But if each college will be a separate entity altogether, with its own chancellor, then that will be problematic. For one thing, the colleges will not be able to take advantage of economies of scale, and for another, there will be more people who will need to be paid the big bucks – it will cost more! Imagine, 5 or 6 chancellors instead of 1!

  25. I agree with fellow scholars who disagree with the view of unbundling because it will simply escalate administrative costs. All they need is recapitalize and encourage lecturer staff to be more proactive to engage the private sector to invest in research which in turn will inject some form of capital used for research.
    I have been to a University which had a population of 36,0000 (University of Stellenbosch), 27,000 (UCT), 60,000 the University of Pretoria and only 20, 000 UWC, yet they only receive less than 25% of their annual budget from Government.
    What surprises me is that we have these managers of Zambian Universities, you wonder what type of Universities they went to??

    Just revisit your shallow thinking of unbundling the University of Zambia

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