THE Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education has de-registered 57 private colleges for operating without proper registration, and condemned over a 100 others for operating illegally.
By NQOBANI NDLOVU
Scores of private schools and colleges have sprouted across the country, with most of them operating in substandard structures and with underqualified personnel, thus comprising the quality of education.
In a notice yesterday, the Higher and Tertiary Education ministry said its investigations, as empowered by an enabling Act, revealed students were being fleeced by paying tuition fees to bogus institutions.
The Ministry de-registered 10 bogus institutions in Bulawayo, 16 in Harare, 8 in Manicaland, 13 in Midlands, 5 in Masvingo and another 5 in Mashonaland West.
“The Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development is carrying out its mandate of inspecting private and independent training institutions to ensure that they are compliant with the Manpower Planning and Development Act Chapter 28:02b subsection 1 and Statutory Instrument 333 of 1996 and 26 of 2001 on critical issues of registration that guarantee quality education and training.
“In this on-going exercise, institutions in Bulawayo metro, Harare metro and Chitungwiza, Manicaland, Mashonaland Central, Mashanoland East, Mashonaland West, Masvingo, Matabeleland North, Matabeleland South and Midlands provinces have been inspected,” the ministry said before listing the closed colleges and several others that have been condemned for operating illegally.
This is not the first time that the Higher Education ministry has closed bogus private institutions. In 2014, government shut 200 private schools and colleges throughout the country following a crackdown against illegal institutions, which were not complying with the country’s laws.
In 2012, a similar exercise was carried out and over 200 illegal colleges and private schools were closed for operating outside the requirements of the law.
Of the over 200 colleges closed in 2012, over 100 were from Bulawayo and their closure caused panic among students as the exercise was carried out at a time when most students were writing their final examinations