Former President of Botswana, Festus Mogae, has said that though many today are praising him for his many endeavours and accolades, he has failed dismally in his attempts to orient the education system more towards science and technology.
Mogae said at the launch of Botho University Alumni Association (BUAA) last week Thursday before giving the keynote address that he decided that Science and Mathematics teachers at all levels would be paid a Science and Mathematics bonus of 10% of salary.
He said this was aimed at inducing the students to apply themselves more to Science and Technology. He said this was countered by stern opposition from teachers unions.
“In my opinion this is where I have failed. Teachers Unions organised a strike saying I am discriminating against other subjects…..I had to give in,” he said.
Mogae said that at that time the majority of the teachers were neither science nor Mathematics teachers, hence the huge opposition.
When giving his keynote address Mogae said Botho University achieved a “highly cherishable dream” of setting up the first Alumni Association of Botho University. He said the formation of BUAA will raise the profile of Botho University among its former graduates, candidates looking for University placement and well wishers. He said this would concurrently create a platform for them to support the institution financially and otherwise.
“As such it was felt that the best and most effective way to link the alumni to the University and the University to the alumni was through the formal process of launching it, and to create a network through which its members can interact,” said Mogae.
He explained the formation of BUAA, saying it would provide partnership with Botho University’s Department of Career Services in order to reach out to more potential employers for the university’s graduates.
Mogae, also an alumnus of one of the oldest universities in the world, Oxford University and Sussex University, said it is important for a university to connect or link with its alumni.
The Mo Ibrahim award winner said he also enjoys the honour of being recognised by his former universities.