Preparations for the opening of another public university, the Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources, are almost through, Professor Moses Kwapata has disclosed.
Kwapata, who is principal of Bunda College of Agriculture, a constituent college of the University of Malawi, said in Lilongwe on Friday that preparations are at advanced stage.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“An Act was passed by Parliament and His Excellency [President Bingu wa Mutharika] did assent to that Bill and what is remaining now is for the responsible Minister of Education to appoint a date to reinforce the Act so that we can have a date when the new institution will start,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said.
Kwapata said work on the curriculum review was completed.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“The curriculum and everything is ready and we have also looked at issues of staff and students transfers from the existing institutions to the new university,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said.
The new university, a brainchild of President Mutharika, will integrate Bunda, Natural Resources College (NRC), Chitedze Agricultural Research Station and Agriculture Research and Extension Trust (Aret).
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We would like members of staff as well as students to understand that by joining the new university, they are losing nothing.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“The studentsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ intake is going to grow. At the moment, our [Bunda] intake has grown faster than any other college in the University of Malawi. The intake now stands at 700 per academic year. We think at NRC there will be some 200 plus and possibly move up to a thousand plus,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Kwapata.
He also disclosed that Chitedze and Aret will remain research centres where their activities will continue but integrating teaching, research and extension activities.