Minister Siakalima seeks stronger research ties between public, private universities to promote innovation


Minister of Education, Douglas Siakalima, has urged Zambia Research and Education Network (ZAMREN) to extend its services to private universities in the country.

Siakalima stated that students across the country should be able to connect to the network to promote innovation.

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The minister said this in Lusaka on Thursday when he toured the newly constructed ZAMREN offices at the University of Zambia (UNZA).

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“We have got only nine public universities and we have more than 40 private universities. We must tap into all those universities because these are all Zambian children that we want to be able to be at the cutting edge of the 21st century,” he stated.

Furthermore, the minister encouraged universities to equip students with knowledge that would foster innovation beyond the classroom, enabling them to solve climate and national challenges.

“Universities must be able to think beyond just lecture theatre,” he pointed out.

Addressing the accommodation situation at UNZA, Siakalima said the construction of the abandoned UNZA hostels was likely to commence within two months.

Meanwhile, UNZA Vice Chancellor, Mundia Muya, stated that the University will continue to utilize ZAMREN services because they are cost-effective and offer high-speed internet.

He also stated that the establishment of the building would create jobs for Zambians.

“With the growing need such as quality of service provision, more services to be provisioned to learners and researchers it became more apparent that ZAMREN needed to employ more staff,” he added.

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