Thursday, October 28, 2021

UB eyes new infrastructure to generate revenue

The University of Botswana (UB) says it will make use of its newly built facilities such as the Indoor Sports centre, Conference & Accommodation centre to generate more money to support its operational budget.

The newly appointed Vice Chancellor (VC) Professor David Norris, who hosted journalists at the University main campus this week, says he is optimistic about turning UB’s current challenges into opportunities.

Whilst admitting that the university is financially challenged, Norris says another way of making extra money for the university will be investing more into research.

In 2016, a leaked document compiled by a University of Botswana (UB) senate detailed that the biggest academic institution in the country was staring imminent collapse as its financial coffers were drying up. The document stated that the institution continues to experience an unprecedented drastic reduction in the funds allocated by the government as well as an unpredictable pattern of disbursement of subvention amounts and tuition.

The document also shows that UB is facing organizational collapse as the government has decided to cut down on subvention since 2011.

Since 2013, tuition for the majority of students who are government sponsored has not been paid, the document stated.

In addition the report says the devastating financial situation at the institution has made annual planning most difficult and increased perceptions of financial instability and uncertainty that have contributed to the loss of some of the most talented and qualified employees to other organizations within and outside the country.

However this week, Norris said that there salary gap between UB academic staff and other institutions such as BUIST is not too big adding that the counter parts are not getting double or triple the UB salaries.

Over the years, the government maintained that UB must transform and not rely on government for funding anymore but rather become a self sustaining entity.

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