Reverend Dr. Billy Gama: Unima council chairperson

BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)—Chairperson of the University of Malawi (Unima) council, Reverend Dr. Billy Gama, has trashed the selection announcement which is in circulation on social media, saying the university council has not yet approved the selection list.

On Wednesday, the social media was awash with tantrums against the Peter Mutharika administration for selecting students into public universities using quota system which the government abolished in February this year.

“The University of Malawi (Unima) is pleased to announce names of candidates who have been admitted into the university to pursue various generic and mature entry programs for the 2020/2021 academic year on non-residential basis. During selection process for generic non-residential students, candidates were admitted first using the equity system of selecting students into public institutions of higher learning,” reads the announcement in part.

However, in a telephone interview with Maravi Post on Wednesday night, Gama distanced the institution from the selection list.

“I don’t remember seeing or approving selection list,” he said.

Commenting on the same on condition of anonymity, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) top official said that the  ‘fake’ selection announcement is probably the work of the opposition parties trying to fool Malawians that quota system is still in use despite its abolishment by the government.

In February, Minister of Education Science and Technology, Hon Dr William Susuwele Banda had announced the abolishment of quota system of selecting students in public universities.

The policy of enrolling students into public universities based on the controversial quota system divided the country, raising accusations of the suppression of minorities. 

The system, which was based on students’ district of origin, rather than merit alone, had been used for nearly a decade and acted as a form of affirmative action for students from the country’s central and southern regions due to their perceived regional underrepresentation at the country’s public universities.

However, some academics, clergymen and political activists said the system was discriminatory against northerners.

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