Technical, Entrepreneurial and Vocational Training Authority (Teveta) board chairperson Gilbert Chilinde says demand for student housing in the country’s public universities and colleges should be regarded as a niche opportunity for investors.
Chilinde made the remarks last Wednesday when Minister of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development Grace Chiumia toured Mbandira Community Technical College in Nkhotakota where it emerged that the institution is facing student housing challenges.
He pointed out that more than 20 000 full-time students are currently enrolled in the country’s universities and colleges; hence, they collectively generate a huge demand for rental housing particularly in large urban centres where rentals are high.
Chilinde said: “This is a big business. Government has established community technical colleges in the country, but have no accommodation facilities. This was done deliberately for private investors to look into this opportunity by constructing accommodation facilities.”
While acknowledging the student housing problem, Chiumia said government is addressing it by, among others, expanding as well as constructing modern accommodation facilities in public universities and colleges in the country.
In his remarks, the college’s acting principal Tedson Kaudzu said universities and colleges are in the business of education and not accommodation hence; the private sector should tap into the opportunity. n