By Confidente Reporter
THE Student Representative Council at the University of Namibia has threatened to go on strike if the university’s management goes with its plan to build a new administration building at Unam’s main campus in Windhoek.
In its complaint letter dated August 31, written to Vice chancellor Prof Lazarus Hangula and copied to Pro-Vice Chancellor (PVC) for administration and finance Ellen Namhila and Pro- Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs at the University of Namibia, Prof Osmund Mwandemele, the SRC objected to the construction of a new building saying the timing is wrong as the biggest institution in the country needs to address other important issues such as students’ hostels, lecture halls and libraries that are not sufficient.
”We don’t think this is the right time for the university to build a new administration block.
Not at a time when the university claims to have insufficient funds, not at a time when many of our lecture halls are in a desperate need of repair.
”The needs of the students should be met first before those whose job is to run our affairs,” part of the letter read. The student body threatened that should they not be responded to soon, “we shall be left with no other option but to bring the university to an operational halt.”
Contacted for comment, Unam spokesperson John Haufiku said that, “The university enjoys an open and collegial relationship with students. They are afforded the right to communicate challenges they face about the service we provide. This is in line with our philosophy of continuous improvement through stakeholder feedback.
”In this case students made known various challenges affecting them. They were genuine. Unam management consequently met with the students immediately, and notarised all the challenges. A task team consisting of all managers then prepared a comprehensive plan with deadlines for all work. This action-plan was shared with students last week, who in turn gave more input. As we speak, the challenges are all being addressed based on what available resources permit.”
The students also complained about malfunctioning projectors a situation which forces them not to visualise what is being taught because the projectors have not been operational for a long time.
“There is an urgent need for the overhead projectors practicality but this does not materialise as projectors do not function this equivalent to sending students into job market half baked.
”If we are truly serious about improving the knowledge imparted in our students. Students should not have to stand in a lecture,” lamented the SRC.
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