She said: “If we are to assist eligible Namibian students with financial assistance to access higher education, then more needs to be done by the Ministry, the Universities, the industry and private individuals in our society. Government cannot do it alone.” She further urged universities to create more fundable proposals for self-sustaining projects.
The government funds 80% of public universities’ budgets, with the expectations that they raise the remaining 20%.
Ndjoze-Ojo, however, highlighted that this has presented challenges over the years but the Ministry is in the process of finalising the formulation of a National Policy on Higher Education which will provide guidelines on how to overcome some of these setbacks.
Dr Tjama Tjivikua , the NUST Vice-Chancellor, used the platform to introduce the University’s theme for the year: Building a World-Class University. Tjivikua expressed his gratitude to the Ministry for its support, but in the same breathe placed emphasis on the areas that need additional funding for NUST to achieve “world-class” status.
Tjivikua said there is need for better infrastructure such as a multi-purpose center and other state-of-the-art facilities.
Due to poor funding, projects such as the construction of new buildings and renovations on campus have been put on hold indefinitely.
Marvellous Shilongo, a third-year Bachelor of Economics Student, and the new Students’ Representative Council (SRC) President, echoed the Vice-Chancellor’s sentiments regarding the need for better funding.
Additionally, Shilongo said that during her reign, she hopes to improve communication channels between the students and Management. She asked students to plan ahead for their registration costs if possible, and she also requested Management to be sensitive towards disadvantaged students. Shilongo is the University’s first female SRC President (since the renaming from Polytechnic of Namibia).