The Namibia Council for Higher Education (NCHE) has requested the Paulinium Seminary, Lingua Franca, NETS, and the Institute of Bankers (IOB) to submit their documents so that they can be considered for accreditation as registered institutions of higher education, following suggestions of an increase in the number of foreign-owned ‘fly-by-night’ institutions in the country.
Despite saying he was unaware of the presence of colleges offering unregistered qualifications in the country, the Minister of Education, Dr. David Namwandi, warned against foreign-owned institutions of higher education that are intent on coning students by offering them unregistered qualification.
“We do encourage honest foreigners that seek to promote education in Namibia. We discourage those colleges that come and dupe students who later on find out that their qualifications are worthless”.
According to Executive Director of the NCHE, Mocks Shivute, the presence of these ‘fly by night’ institutions has reached his attention although not being able to pinpoint them at this point in time.
He said the NCHE has not started policing private Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) as it is not the council’s responsibility.
“We have not started policing private HEIs as it is not our business to do so, and our business is to rather assure quality. Maybe time will come for us to do so in the future, since it is in our mandate to close down institutions that do not offer accredited programs and bogus ones for that matter.”
Shivute added that an institution is registered as an education provider and that the institution in audited in terms of facilities and programs that it will offer. “The institution must be registered with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, must be in possession of a fitness certificate from the municipality, must have audited financial statements and more importantly must be financially sound. That is in case the institution stops operating. It should be in a position to refund the students,” he added.
“It is also important to mention that before we register any private HEI, it must have its programs registered on the Namibian Qualifications Framework (NQF) which is administered by the Namibia Qualifications Authority to determine the levels”, he added.
He hopes that the NCHE will finish the process of registering all the Private Higher Education Institutions in the course of next year. He, however, said registration will only be done for PHEIs that have gotten accreditation from the Namibian Qualifications Authority (NQA).
Shivute also confirmed that the International University of Management (IUM), Triumphant College and Head start Montessori Teacher Training College are in the process of being gazetted before being handed their certificates.