Chancellor College closure worries NGO ‘There is Hope’

A Non-Governmental Organisation based at the Dzaleka Refugees Camp in Dowa, There is Hope (TIH), has appealed to government, Chancellor College Student’s Union and the University Council to resolve their differences amicably to enable students go back to classes.

Chanco students want college to be opened

Speaking in an interview after a media familiarization tour which brought together journalists from the print and electronic media houses, the organization’s founder and Executive Director, Innocent Magambi, said continued closure of Chancellor College is a worrisome development to both students and sponsors.

Magambi, born to Burundian parents in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and has lived in Refugees camp for 27 years said his organisation sponsors students at Chancellor College, Polytechnic, Kamuzu College of Nursing, Malawi College of Accountancy, Mzuzu University among others.

“The students are sponsored not only with school fees but upkeep allowance, so the delay to open the college will not produce the intended outcome TIH is waiting from its students, that is to contribute positively to the development of this country,” said Magambi.

He expressed fears that students who are waiting to start their academic sessions alongside others at the Chancellor College will be greatly affected by the time factor which is not pleasing TIH and its donors saying sponsorships of students scholarships is done in line with the organization’s budget.

One of the students TIH is sponsoring at the Chancellor College, Jacqueline Hoya, 35, said the delay has affected her so much saying she was encouraged to go back to school out of marriage with twins and managed to get 16 points in last year’s Malawi School Certificate Examinations (MSCE) at the Dzaleka Community Day Secondary School in the district.

“I first sat for MSCE in 2009, got 35 points and was taken to study at Lilongwe Teachers College. I then became a primary school teacher for some years and then went back to school and made it to the Chancellor College. My worry is I took a 4-year study leave to go and study at the Chancellor College hoping to finish in time but the closure is really affecting me and is discouraging,” said Hoya.

She added that her ambitions of achieving the set goals she has been planning in her life will not be achieved for choosing to learn at Chancellor College while other constituent colleges’ students are in class.

Group Village Headman Lilambwe, a site where TIH has a center in the area of Traditional Authority (T/A) Msakambewa in the district, commended TIH for awarding a scholarship to one girl from his village to study at the Chancellor College.

Lilambwe said although he is proud of Jacqueline Hoya as a role model and the first university student from his village, he worries with her continued staying at home saying she would lose confidence with college education.

Chancellor College was supposed to be open in March, 2017 but the academic staff left no stone unturned demanding Government to re-look into their salaries to match with the other constituent colleges under the University of Malawi.

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