The time is here to take decisive action to save UNISA.
The inaction of the Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation, Dr Blade Nzimande, has allowed the situation at this University to reach breaking point.
Minister Nzimande announced that he has received the latest report on UNISA from the independent assessor, Prof. Themba Mosia.
He must now decide whether or not to act on the recommendation to place the oldest and largest university in South Africa under administration.
This is just one more step in a series of investigations that have come to nothing thus far.
The report by a ministerial task team that Nzimande had appointed to investigate certain ills at UNISA was leaked in October 2021.
The report allegedly claims that apart from administrative problems, UNISA is also guilty of mass-producing low-quality degrees.
Nzimande never formally issued the report, but he did indicate that he is working with the University to address the problems that were highlighted.
In 2022, however, he had no choice but to appoint Prof. Mosia to investigate UNISA.
After an initial delay, that report was submitted to the Minister on 12 May 2023 and in accordance with legislation, he handed it over to the University’s board.
The report indicates that the functional boundary between UNISA’s management and board has become blurred, with numerous negative consequences. The most important recommendation is that the University must be placed under administration.
The Minister has 90 days to decide what to make of the recommendations. With the number of recommendations regarding UNISA that he has already ignored in mind, one cannot help but wonder whether he will take any decisive action now.
UNISA plays a key role in raising the qualification level of working individuals. So, taking action to restore the University’s status is essential.
Read the original article in Afrikaans by Dr. Wynand Boshoff on FF Plus