Home | News    Sunday 6 April 2008

Vice-Chancellor appeals to return public universities to South Sudan

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By Isaac Vuni

April 5, 2008 (JUBA) — The Vice Chancellor of Juba University, Professor Sibirin Farajalla has appealed to government of southern Sudan to assist in returning the three South Sudan public universities of Juba, Wau and Malakal to their original places.

Vice Chancellor of Juba University Prof. Sibrin Farajalla (I. Vuni ST)

Speaking on behalf of the three Vice Chancellors of Southern Sudan public Universities, Professor Farajalla said Universities administrations are charged with extra responsibilities of returning the universities back to their original premises but without adequate finance allocations

Adding that chancellors are also faced with increasing numbers of students seeking admission and on the other hand issues of non payment of student’s tuitions by both governments of Southern Sudan and states are very disturbing to universities administrations.

Hence the Vice Chancellor demanded from national University admission board to seriously consider increasing intake for the three South Sudan universities who are faced with increasing numbers of qualified students at national intakes but are not admitted in other colleagues/Universities of the country.

Vice Chancellor explained that the administration of Juba universities have decided to break the process of returning first year students into two due to limited accommodation facilities of Juba campus.

Responding to feeding and accommodation of students, he said in the whole Sudan accommodation and feeding of university students are no longer the responsibility of the university but of student support funds yet in southern Sudan, it’s left to university administration to manage alone.

Professor Farajalla say Juba University is at national entity, therefore the administration found it in human not to house and feed students who came far from different parts of Southern Sudan on ticket of national intake. "It’s unfair to tell national students who came from far to find their own accommodate and feed then to commute daily for lectures to university campus," explained Vice Chancellor.

Previously there was an allocation made by the central government for the return of South Sudan universities of Juba, Wau and Malakal but due to war the relocation never took off.

"Now that there is peace, the administrations of the three south Sudan universities expectation were that the federal government would make special budget that would make it possible for the return of South Sudan public universities to their original places in orderly manner unfortunately it’s not happening," he observed.

Professor Farajalla stressed that Southern Sudan academicians and professionals have greater role to play in respect to reconstruction and development of Southern Sudan but their expertise unfortunately are not being utilize by southern Sudan government. "Instead both GoSS and states governors opted to higher the so called consultants from neighbouring countries than first consulting with their own academicians from the three public universities who are much more qualified than most of those foreigners being higher at high cost."

Vice Chancellor assureed South Sudan governors that the three public universities would be able to bring all there students between now to year 2010. And by the end of year 2009 all respective colleges should have been brought back to South Sudan.

The Deputy Dean of Students in the University of Juba, William Hai Zaza, said that Juba University is now hosting seven colleges of Rural and Community Development with 267 students, Medicine with 91students, Education with 273 students, Engineering has 91 students, Art, Music and Drama has 54 students, Natural Resources and Environment study has 288 students, Applies and Industrial science students has 135 students respectively; adding that over one hundred students have been discontinued but they are still residing in the campus.

Zaza stated that state governors of southern Sudan have declined from paying their students admitted in Juba University that prompted the vice chancellor to seek opportunity to address the fifth Governors Forum on 13th March this year.

Since then the state of Warrap, Upper Nile and northern Bahr el Ghazal have expressed readiness to meet the outstanding of their respective students and requested university authority not to chase them away as they prepared to remit money to university account as soon as possible.

However, the state of Eastern Equatoria council of ministers have rejected to pay for tuition fees of their students via letter No.SG/CM/EES/T/32.A-1 dated 3rd April 2008 and it was signed by Mr. Cyprian Okuye Atar, Secretary General for the Government of Eastern Equatoria state.

Zaza disclosed that college of Art, Music and Drama together with diploma students will have to relocate to John Garang Memorial secondary school premises for a period of one year starting this month as per their agreement with governor of Central Equatoria State.

The deputy Dean of students appeal to all southern governors to seriously consider meeting tuition fees of their students in time to enable university rendered them academic services promptly.

Earlier representatives of 172 diploma students from the ten states of Southern Sudan, Student Onyuu Nicodemus had complained of being denied accommodation by the university authority despite the fact that their fee are paid by the same government of Southern Sudan and they came from different parts of the ten states on national intake merit only to find no feeding and accommodation in the university campus.

In an exclusive interview, the Coordinator of Distance Learning in Juba University, Gule Buyu, said the center was established in 1998 and it was then catering for the needs of Arabic pattern students in Khartoum. However, after signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in January 2005, the university staff introduced English pattern to enable southern national to upgrade their diploma to master and master to PhDs respectively and since then over sixty students have enrolled in the program.

This year the number of students from various colleges has gone to over eighty and most of them are working in government offices with huge number coming from southern Sudanese lawyers who are paying their own tuitions fees, he added.

Buyu further explained that the center offers academic accreditation in high learning ranging from diplomas to PhDs in various filed of Management study, Social and Economic, Education, Law, Rural Development and community study and Center for peace study. That this year academic recruitment of undergraduate students has risen to eighty.

Regarding the tuition fees, he said that Undergraduate students are to pay yearly tuitions in two instalments in accordance to various colleges; 600 Sudanese pounds for undergraduate, 1250 for post graduate diploma and 2,250 Sudanese pounds for master decree students respectively.

Juba University offers opportunity to Sudanese national who did not have opportunity to continue with their study or would like to upgrade their standard and kills interrupted due to various reasons including the protracted Sudan war.

(ST)

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