Minister for Education and Vocational Training Joyce Ndalichako.St Joseph University of Tanzania (SJUIT) will run next academic year due to start in October without new students, succumbing to pressure by the nation’s high academic overseer organization, Tanzania Commission for Universities (TCU) that barred the new entry pending settlements of academic discrepancies.
The academic hitches defying TCU standards that led to the latest intake freeze in a row of other sanctioned harassments involving closure of the Catholic Church-run Songea and Arusha campuses, included an allegedly poor quality education.
The decision by TCU at the SJUIT Luguruni campus in Dar es Salaam comes barely a month after it revoked the registration of the subsidiary campus in Songea and Arusha for failure to meet the quality assurance standards.
The Luguruni campus was then spared, pending the release of evaluation report from TCU before the commencement of the second semester this week.
However, it was all not that bad news for the struggling university as TCU released the evaluation report this week, saying it would not revoke approval of the remaining Luguruni and Boko campuses in Dar es Salaam.
“TCU has made its evaluation and found out that the existing challenges at the Luguruni campus can be solved at the university’s administrative levels under our supervision” the TCU Executive Secretary Professor Yunus Mgaya told the Guardian on Sunday on Friday.
“We allow commencement of their daily academic activities on a condition that they do not enroll new students for this academic year until the outlined challenges are settled,” he said.
The Commission, among others, has ordered the university authority to equip the institution with an adequate number of qualified lecturers including Ph.D. holders and professors, to increase the number of workshops, laboratories and other facilities.
Earlier, students at the university staged a strike in a protest against high tuition fees and low quality education, but the Minister for Education and Vocational Training Joyce Ndalichako ordered them to go back to classes, amid pledges she would work with the university authorities to address their claims.
However, Professor Mgaya confirmed to this paper that TCU is currently scrutinizing the International Medical and Technological University (IMTU) on its way to Kampala International University (KIU), the two institutions notoriously chronic in violation of the commission’s values centred on the provision of quality education.
“This is the nationwide exercise to awaken universities into proper implementation of their duties and challenging them into delivering quality university education,” he said.
He said a team of experts from the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, a professor from Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) and TCU started evaluation processes at IMTU earlier this week.
He said the report on IMTU may be released to public if so deemed necessary, noting the commission was especially keen in inspecting a number of universities whose records call for consistent scrutiny.
“We cannot do it all alone because it is an exercise that needs a lot of human resources, that’s why we have to involve professors and officials from relevant ministries in this,” said Prof. Mgaya.
In February TCU revoked accreditation of St Joseph University College of Agricultural Science (SJUCAST) and St Joseph University College of Information (SJUCIT) based in Ruvuma region and Saint Joseph Arusha Campus barely five years since its establishment, citing gross underperformance.
Following the revocation, more than 3,603 students of the three constituent colleges were transferred by TCU to other higher learning institutions with immediate effect.
According to section 5(1) of the Universities Act, Cap.346 of the Laws of Tanzania, the Commission is mandated among other things, to oversee and regulate quality as well as the general management and performance of universities.
SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN