The closure of the institutions of higher learning has attracted the wrath of bishops of the influential Catholic Church in Malawi and attacked the collapse of education system in the country.
Speaking on behalf of Catholic Bishops at the opening of a two-day round table conference Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM) organised with its development partners in Lilongwe, Bishop Dr Martin Mtumbuka said most of the problems in Malawi, including academic crisis, is a result of poor and incompetence of leaders.
“It is a pity that some universities have closed. It is very sad that [public] universities are not functioning,” said Bishop Mtumbuka, who is also vice chairman of ECM.
Mtumbuka also heads the education section of the ECM.
He said the education mess is not only at tertiary level but even primary and secondary schools.
“People participate in governance issues when they are educated. But here in Malawi the whole concept of education is abandoned,” said Mtumbuka.
He said Malawi education system is “down” and that people are not capacitated, saying “bad politicians are thriving on that.”
The Bishop added: “We should capacitate people to choose good leaders and to kick out bad leaders.”
Speaking during the first congregation of the Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (Luanar) last week, President Peter Mutharika accused councils and managements of public universities of contributing to the closure of the institutions of higher learning because of their resistance to embrace the ongoing reforms in the public service.
The President declared that he does not want “everything to come to me” whenever a crisis arises in the universities.
Said Mutharika: “I know that some people are eager to point fingers at the Head of State and chancellor for every problem that arises in the universities. I am the ultimate authority and I don’t mind.
“But we must remember the principles of good governance. The governance of every university is done by the Council and its management. We have empowered them by law to govern the universities on behalf of the government. And I do not expect everything to come to me. I expect the Council and management to do what is required of them.”
“And to every chairperson of Council and vice-chancellor, let me say this: Malawians expect you to be visibly active in managing your university on behalf of Government; more so in times of crisis,” he added.
He also accused authorities in the education sector of resisting change, particularly the ongoing Public Service Reforms Programme (PSRP).Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :