Mugabe's minister tells lecturers to get PhDs by 2017 or risk sack

Lecturers teaching at state-owned tertiary institutions in Zimbabwe have been asked to earn their doctoral degrees (PhD) by 2017 or risk losing their jobs as the Robert Mugabe-led government continues efforts to encourage high learning standards at the tertiary level.

Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe

Lecturers teaching at state-owned tertiary institutions in Zimbabwe have been asked to earn their doctoral degrees (PhD) by 2017 or risk losing their jobs.

Zimbabwe's Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development, Professor Jonathan Nathaniel Moyo, who spoke during a familiarisation meeting with academic and non-academic staff at the Great Zimbabwe University, explained that there is already an agreement between the Robert Mugabe-led government and the state universities' Vice Chancellors, as efforts continue to encourage high learning standards at the tertiary level.

He implied that the Doctor of Philosophy degrees (Ph.D) minimum requirement for being a university lecturer would be enforced by 2017, leaving many lecturers with just about 15 months to earn theirs.

"The decision (for lecturers to have a minimum qualification of a PhD) was not made by Government, but by the universities themselves," Moyo said.

"The majority of universities in our country recognise that the minimum qualification for a lecturer should be a PhD by 2017.

"It will be problematic if one is to be found without a PhD by 2017."

The Minister however said the government will allow further discussions before enforcing the requirement.

"We, however, cannot say it is a requirement for a lecturer to have a PhD by 2017, but it is an expectation, the decision to do that came from vice chancellors and universities have academic freedom, it was not a Government decision and there is room for more discussions about that," he added.

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