Zim plans mining university

HARARE - Zimbabwe plans to set up a Pan-African Minerals University of Science and Technology (Pamust) in 2014 aimed at addressing issues of value addition for Africa’s mineral resources in line with the continent’s mining vision.

Mines minister Walter Chidhakwa said the establishment of such a university was provided for in the government’s new economic blueprint ? the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation.

“Pamust is being established to offer the highest specialised instruction, and to provide the fullest equipment for the most advanced training and research in all aspects of exploitation of African mineral resources for the maximum benefit of Africa,” he said.

Although the exact location of the university is yet to be established, the college is expected to offer post-graduate degrees in geosciences for mineral exploration, mining engineering, extractive metallurgy, material science and engineering as well as mineral business studies.

The university is being established as part of a network of African Institutes of Science and Technology (AISTs) being centres of excellence under the auspices of the Nelson Mandela Institute.

Three other colleges that have already been established include one in Nigeria that focuses on energy and petrochemical engineering while the one on Tanzania deals with life sciences and bio-engineering.

The college in Burkina Faso provides training in water engineering and environment.

These institutions are tasked to train and develop the next generation of African scientists, engineers and technologist who will impact on the continent’s development through the application of science, engineering and technology.

Chidhakwa said the university will also promote research in a cost effective manner, through pooling of resources.

“This continental approach will increase benefits for all African countries, especially for a large number of smaller countries that lack the human and financial resources to sustain excellence in institutions of higher learning,” he said.

The establishment of Pamust comes after an independent consulting firm SRK Consulting recently indicated that Africa’s mining sector is increasingly relying on third-party consultants, owing to the lack of experienced mechanical and electrical engineers.

Steve Owen, the principal consultant at SRK Consulting noted that the skills shortage was a result of aging, experienced artisans who are reaching retirement age.

Industry experts contend that it is becoming increasingly obvious that skills are a country’s best economic foundation and that Africa’s economies are fertile fields of opportunity for electrical and mechanical skills.

Comments (7)

Ndinoti University iyoyo ngaiuyewo kuMberengwa kana Zvishavane kwete kuvaka kwaZvimba ikoko sezvo uneukama naSekuru . Zvishavane is the right place to construct this university coz it is engulfed with mines like Mimosa , Unki , Buchwa , Sandawana , Shabanie , Mashaba mazhinji

MukarangawekuMberengwa - 9 December 2013

you do not need another university Sir, you already have state universities with mining departments- sort those first- the money you want to use -use it to improve those department please dont be wasteful.

mbrengwa - 9 December 2013

i think you should just establish a mining department at the already national university of science and technology whats the need to built another university whilst we have not even complete a university since 1991

sija - 9 December 2013

The college of mines in Bulawayo will serve the purpose Cde Minister.

Mwata Yamvo - 10 December 2013

The role of establishing education facilities is that of the Ministry of Higher education. Your role minister is to facilitate investment in the mining industry. Extraction of minerals from the earth's crust. It is not your responsibility to drive beneficiation as this falls under the ministry of industry. The sooner we realize what our roles are the better we can serve this country. There are adequate universities in the country and what is required is to include mining departments as already been said. The UZ has always trained mining specialists in almost all mining disciplines and we have the school of mines established to train technicians in all mining disciplines. Another mining university is being established under the MSU in Manicaland and I am not sure where this madness is coming from.

Timothy Thorton - 15 December 2013

Cde Chidhakwa, l am an interested party in these mining institution issues. Like what most of the other guys have been saying, refurbishing the existing universities' facilities is what is required not having 100 Universities in the country that you cant manage. You have enjoyed the role of mining & metallurgy departments at UZ and have left the 2 departments to go down to the dogs, no funding to the Insitute of Minerals Research at the main university campus, now you want to talk of building one! Really??? First manage the mining development in the country and minerals that are being extracted and "stolen" (if u allow me to use that term) effectively. Recently the Chinese in Marange Diamond Fields were complaining that they now need softer spots to extract to mine from, after they have hit a hard rock in their current mining area; and many other issues going on; what have you dne about it? Such things are to be sorted first. Hamuzore mafuta Minister musati mapedza kugeza. Tangai mageza mozozora mafuta.

Kauchy - 19 December 2013

"The establishment of Pamust comes after an independent consulting firm SRK Consulting recently indicated that Africa's mining sector is increasingly relying on third-party consultants, owing to the lack of experienced mechanical and electrical engineers." This is largely because the market in Zim is failing to utilise these graduates. Where on earth would you you employ a qualified engineer and keep him unpaid for months like you are doing? The consultants are there havaperi, asi even if you build another university without fixing the market, then you are not solving any problem, the solution doesnt lye in having a million university! UZ is even worse than it was way back, no lecturers etc. There is no link Cde Minister in building more university and having the right professionals in the industries!

Kauchy - 19 December 2013

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