By Matthew Kanu. .
Deputy Minister of Planning and Economic Development Dr. Robert Chakanda
The Deputy Minister of Planning and Economic Development and the Director of Planning and Economic Development delivered this year’s induction lecture to more than 50 UNIMAK masters students on designing the country’s 4th Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP4).
Vice Chancellor of UNIMAK welcomed the Deputy Minister Dr. Robert T. Chakanda and the Director of Planning and Development Unit of the same Ministry, Dr. Sheka Bangura. Professor Turay said the presence of the two most senior personnel of the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development at UNIMAK shows that the Ministry is decentralizing the process of designing the development plan of the country. “This means the people in rural Sierra Leone are becoming part of the process of their own development” Professor Turay opined. He suggested that the District and City Council development plan be cascaded into wards, chiefdoms, districts and the regions of the country.
This is the third time economic development practitioner Dr.Sheka Bangura has delivered a public lecture marking the beginning of the academic year for the Masters in Sustainable Development students.
Many of the students that attended this year’s lecture raised concerns and asked the Deputy Minister and the lecturer many questions. Like most of the students Steven Bockarie Mansaray praised the effort of the ministry to come down to their level but raised some concerns on the poor road network that is debarring the transportation of agricultural goods from the villages to the bigger cities. Some of these villages close to the Guinean border are using the Guinean currency instead of the Leones. The New Direction PRSP 4 should therefore consider improving Agriculture and focus more on industrialization.
Hassan A Sesay suggested that the PRSP 4 should make rural Sierra Leone very attractive with social amenities that will discourage urban migration . “Sierra Leone is still referred to as a fragile state because the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission are not implemented and the things that brought about the decade long civil conflict in the country are still visible” said Mr. Sesay.
By Matthew Kanu in Makeni. .
The State University of New York has donated textbooks in various disciplines to the University of Makeni through a former employee of the State University of New York Dr. S A M Kargbo. Dr. Kargbo told staff and management of UNIMAK that the books were donated as a good will venture of State University of New York towards quality education in Africa, and particularly in post conflict Sierra Leone. Dr. Kargbo said the books will enable the students to work hard and achieve their dreams. Presently Dr. Kargbo is a staff member of the UNIMAK Faculty of Education and a member of the Quality Assurance Directorate .
The UNIMAK Library team unpacking the books
This is the first time such a donation has come from a leading university in the United State of America. Many staff of UNIMAK hope that this the beginning of a relationship between the two institutions.UNIMAK Vice Chancellor Professor Joseph Turay welcomed the donation on behalf of the Chancellor of UNIMAK. Professor Turay told journalists that the books will be useful for both students and lecturers of various departments and faculties that will generate new knowledge for the human resource development of Sierra Leone.
The recent clarion call to quality education by the Government of Sierra Leone is faced with the challenge of quality textbooks for higher institutions of learning across the country. Donating such a huge consignment of textbooks in various fields will help to overcome such a challenge said UNIMAK Chief Librarian Leonard Massaquoi.
By Matthew Kanu in Makeni.
Staff of Kwame Nkruma University Of Science And Technology with UNIMAK hosts.
A team from Ghana’s Kwame Nkruma University of Science and Technology (KNUST) has visited UNIMAK in September.
Provost of the UNIMAK Sylvanus Koroma Campus Lawyer Benedict Chernor Jalloh told journalists that the purpose of the visit was to establish partnership between the two institutions, covering students and staff exchange, staff development, curriculum development and joint research programs. The visiting team included Dr. Ebenezer Belford, Professor William Ellis and Professor Vincent Lomotey.
Students and staff of the University of Makeni welcomed the move by KNUST to promote higher quality education in Sierra Leone.This is the first time a leading university in Ghana is taking the lead in ensuring and enhancing a partnership that will promote higher learning within the West African Sub region. Some of the staff of UNIMAK have already completed Masters studies in various fields at KNUST, including director of UNIMAK Quality Assurance Office, Moses Conteh .
Speaking on behalf the KNUST team Professor William Ellis said they were here to start a relationship or partnership on an equal footing regardless of UNIMAK been very young and smaller in size compared to KNUST. Professor Ellis thank UNIMAK for the friendliness and hospitality rendered to them .
By Matthew Kanu..
UNIMAK Staff and King Mohamed 6th University Founder.
On the 7th September 2018 a team of four UNIMAK staff, headed by Professor Joseph Turay, travelled to Guinea to the King Mohamed 6th University in the Republic of Guinea. They were welcomed by the King Mohamed the 6th University Founder, Mara Nfaly , who called for more partnership between the two institutions. He thanked Professor Turay for accommodating his students for the past 3 years , and hoped for continuing collaboration between the two as he is ready to learn from the experience of UNIMAK in running university administration
This is the third year students from the King Mohamed the 6th University have come to UNIMAK to learn how to write and speak English language. Guinea is a predominantly French speaking country but there is a clarion call on the essence of learning English in order to position themselves better in the job market.
UNIMAK staff and academic and administration staff of King Mohamed 6th University.
Vice Chancellor Joseph Turay, on behalf of the Chancellor of UNIMAK, thanked the founder for the trust in starting such a relationship that will benefit citizens of the Mano River Union and the ECOWAS Sub region. “We are here to strengthen this partnership that will address common problems in West Africa “ Professor Turay highlighted .
This partnership is based on the MOU signed between the two institutions in January 2018. Possible areas of collaboration include joint research programmes, students and staff exchange, curriculum harmonization and development, and joint conferences.
Round Table Discussions
Professor David Sarah Koroma, part of the team from UNIMAK, said the two institutions could also look into the setting up of dual or joint supervision of students, publications and scientific knowledge exchange . He said the two institutions could also look into future masters and PhD programmes. In the long run the students of UNIMAK could go to Guinea and learn French. The ability to strengthen this agreement was demonstrated by both staff of the two institutions during the joint meeting.
By Matthew Kanu from Makeni..
UNIMAK Participants in 2018 Seminar On Higher Education For African Countries
The Chinese Embassy in Sierra Leone in it’s bid to contribute to the promotion of Higher Education is presently aiding the University of Makeni (UNIMAK) in short and long term academic programmes.
Vice Chancellor of the University of Makeni, Professor Joseph Turay, said in an interview how he appreciated the effort of the Chinese Embassy staff in Sierra Leone in building the capacity of the academic staff. He said they have established a bilateral relationship with the Embassy that will contribute to the Human Resource Development of Sierra Leone.
Group photo of the UNIMAK ICT seminar team in China
The staff of UNIMAK are attending seminars in China throughout the year. A team of four attended a three weeks seminar on Higher Education Management, a team of five attended a seminar on ICT Application in Higher Education for African Countrie, and a team of four attended a Seminar on China’s Social System and Public Policy Experience.
Daniel Salifu Samura presented a gift from the University of Makeni to the Director of the International Centre for Higher Education Innovation under UNESCO, Professor Li Ming
The majority of the academic staff and management of the University believe that the relationship between UNIMAK and the Government and Peoples of China is very important for the development of Sierra Leone. Accounting and Finance Head of Department Abdulai Sankoh said he was grateful to be part of the team that participated in the seminar on China’s Experience. He said this seminar enabled him to gain new ideas and learn something new that will impact not only the academic staff development of the University but Sierra Leone as a whole.
Andrew Sesay Receiving Certificate After The Seminar
Dean of the Faculty of Commerce and Management, Victoria Iheanacho, who spent three weeks in Zhejiang University in Jinhua City, explained that there is a lot Sierra Leone can learn from China in the area of politics, respect for the rule of law, the Economy, technology and the environment.