Conference on Higher Education issues communique

The Conference on Innovative approaches to Funding Higher Education and Research has urged African governments to ensure the Creation of university funds to run higher education in their countries.

African Countries should also promote the culture of innovation as far as the financing of universities and other higher educational institutions are concerned.

This was contained in a six- point communiqué issued at the end of the three-day meeting hosted by the Togolese Government and sponsored by UNESCO, the Association of African Universities, the Association for the Development of Education in Africa, and the African and Malagasy Council on Higher Education.

The communiqué asked for the creation of a funding model that would ensure a continuous funding mechanism for the institutions.

They should also find and put in place quality methods of managing the funding mechanisms so as to control the use of such funding mechanisms to meet their proposed requirements.

The communiqué called for the setting up of a department dedicated to research on funding both classic and innovative activities.

About 180 delegates from Africa and its development partners attended the conference.

They include African Higher Education stakeholders such as Senior Staff Members of Ministries in charge of Higher Education and Research, Senior Staff Members of Ministries of Finance, Members of African Parliaments, Vice Chancellors, Presidents, Rectors and Heads of African Universities and Research Institutions.

Others are the Private Sector, Civil Society, African Union and all African Regional Organisations and Development Partners.

Ghana’s 20- member delegation was led by Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, a Deputy Minister of Education in-charge of Tertiary Education. Others are Dr Pascal Andoh Hoba, Director of Knowledge, Communication, ICT and Services and Professor D.D. Kuupole, Vice Chancellor of the University of Cape Coast.

The Togolese Minister of Higher Education and Research Octave Nicoue Broohm expressed gratitude to the organisers for planning towards the renovation of funding that would help position the universities better .

Among other things, the conference aimed at developing a synergy regarding implementation of activities to support countries and universities, to with the support of partner organisations, deal with the various challenges.

It was to also support African countries in identifying innovative approaches tailored to their contexts for funding higher education and research.

It aimed at helping to disseminate among universities and Ministries through a joint publication, acts of the conference, existing best practices, and to develop a common strategy to monitor and support countries in the development of new strategies for mobilising and sustaining resources for higher education and research.

Five models of best practices from Ghana, Senegal, Nigeria, South Africa and Rwanda were developed for discussion. GNA

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