The relationship between the university and government
Patel, Hasu H.
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It would not be untrue to suggest that the conference on the role and future of the University of Zimbabwe is the most important conference held at this University in the last decade, if not over the entire period of the University's experience, The conference involves academics from outside of Zimbabwe, but more importantly involves the direct participation of, on the one hand, academics of the University and, on the other hand, Ministers, including the Prime Minister, and civil servants in Zimbabwe. This type of conference is an appropriate and highly significant forum to begin the necessary dialogue between the University of Zimbabwe and the Government of Zimbabwe. Hopefully, there will be other forums in which to further pursue this dialogue, involving an unequal partnership (UZ being the junior partner), because only with an on-going dialogue can the university play and continually redefine its role not only in relation to the academic community but also in relation to Government and society at large. In addition, this conference has been planned to coincide with the installation of Professor W.J. Kamba as Principal and Vice- Chancellor of the University of Zimbabwe. The installation of the first black chief officer of the university is the other momentous event in the history of this University. Therefore, it is right and proper that the University and Government and society wish him all success and accord him all support in the tremendous burden which now rests on his shoulders in navigating this university in the era of independence, particularly since more than likely his role within the University will involve "interventionist radical change with consensus.” This brief paper deals with the role of a university, the Colonial university, UZ/Government relations, and suggests some structural/curricula changes, although not in an exhaustive manner.