Varsity ventures into mining

Fungai Lupande
Mash Central Bureau
Zimbabwe Ezekiel Guti University (ZEGU) has ventured into mining in Bindura and has established a faculty of mining, Vice chancellor Professor James Chetsanga has said.

Speaking at a graduation ceremony last Friday, Prof Chetsanga said the university had opened a research and development centre in Harare to coordinate its projects.

He said the centre was working on the development of ZEGU’s mining claims in Bindura both for commercial production and future development of the university’s faculty of mining.

“The centre is also working on innovation projects in collaboration with industrial firms for the manufacture of products to be used in the fight against Covid-19 and any other future emergencies. This project is ongoing in collaboration with international partners and other universities,” he said.

“We are working on solar development for commercial production and distribution and also engaging in agricultural and agro-business activities in collaboration with ZAOGA Women’s Cooperative and Limbeck Farm.

“The university is in need of additional student hostels to improve the quality of life of students. The completion of a triple-storey male hostel will go a long way in alleviating the shortage of student accommodation.”

Prof Chetsanga said they were experiencing huge demand for scholarship support because of economic hardships.

The campus was in need of additional boreholes to mitigate water shortages and cater for the growing population.

Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development Minister Dr Amon Murwira who was represented by his deputy mr Raymond Machingura, said an upper middle income economy would be attained through industrialisation and modernisation.

“Human capital development constitutes an integral part of Vision 2030 as a key enabler. Universities are central to the sustained improvement in our economy.

“Our ambition is to transform Zimbabwe’s higher and tertiary education sector into a multi-billion dollar industry,” he said.

“A national critical skills audit revealed a national skills level of 38 percent against a celebrated literacy rate of 94 percent.

“The development of skills to bridge that gap through implementing a robust programme-qualification mix had become the major imperative of the higher and tertiary education system.

“It is encouraging to note that our universities have taken up the responsibility to move forward, the Education 5.0 tenets by producing quality, innovative graduates who will contribute in solving societal challenges.”

Dr Murwira said President Mnangagwa was impressed by ZEGU last year for producing low-cost Covid-19 innovations using local materials.

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