New facilities anticipated to solve UB’s funding woes

UB Academic Hospital
UB Academic Hospital

New facilities at the University of Botswana are expected to relieve the institution from over reliance on government funding.

According to officials, the newly unveiled infrastructure will also immensely enhance the students’ learning experience.

Deputy vice chancellor finance and administration, David Katzke told Mmegi on the sidelines of the facilities tour’ on Friday, that the facilities formed part of the income generation regime.

The three sets of facilities are a conference centre, indoor sport centre and a teaching hospital.

Katzke said allowing private individuals to use the facilities at a fee would contribute towards operational financing of the university.

However, the teaching hospital has been established as a major referral hospital and a teaching centre, with a greater vision of it serving as a medical tourism hub.  “Outsourcing some of the facilities to those without the capacity to design such structures would be part of generating third stream income,” he said.

Katzke added that unlike other institutions of its stature, UB relied heavily on government subventions and tuition fees but with these financing models proving to be inadequate, other sources of income were overdue. “Third stream income generation constitutes to 60 percent of the total budget in some universities, while its zero here at UB,” he said. 

In 2014/2015 for instance, the institution received a P1.5 billion funding from government, whereas student fees constituted P436 million. Katzke added that in this regard, financial planning was very difficult under this two-tiered funding model.

Moreover, he said these new developments would enhance the learning experience as they would create an enabling environment which was key to improved academic performance.

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