Financial management challenges confronting higher learning institutions of learning under the decentralisation policy in Zambia: the case of the national in-service training.

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Moonga, Arnolt L. H
Changala, Moses
Lisulo, Sibeso
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The University of Zambia
In the early 1990s the government of the Republic of Zambia embarked on administrative, political and socio-economic reforms in order to improve its service delivery in all sectors of the economy. The Fifth National Development Plan (FNDP, 2006–2010) emphasises the need for the reforms to be completed and acknowledges that in the early 1990s, the government began a political and socio-economic reform process which involved democratising the political system, transforming the administrative system and liberalising the economy. According to the Ministry of Education (MoE, 2005) during this period the Public Service was bloated, inefficient, ineffective, and inadequately responsive to the needs of the public. It was also characterised by poor discipline and inadequate professionalism and accountability, resulting in poor service delivery. To redress this situation, the government embarked on implementing the Public Service Reform Programme (PSRP) in 1993 as a systematic long-term measure to reform the Public Service. The overall goal of the PSRP was “to improve the quality, delivery, efficiency and cost effectiveness of public services to the people of Zambia”. Initially, the Public Service Reform Programme had three main areas of focus, namely; Restructuring, Management and Human Resources Performance Improvement, and Decentralisation and strengthening of Local Government. These were aimed at streamlining the functions, structures, establishments, and operations of ministries/institutions in order to create a lean, less costly, but well motivated Public Service. They were also aimed at introducing organisational, management, and accountability systems into government operations to improve efficiency and effectiveness in the delivery of public services and decentralising authority and control of resource allocation and utilisation from Central Government to districts and local authorities (GRZ, 1993). As earlier mentioned, all sectors of the economy underwent administrative, political and socio-economic reforms and the tertiary education sector was not an exception. The tertiary sub- sector can be characterised by two specific groups. The first are those institutions falling directly Published by the University of Zambia on behalf of OSSREA Zambia Chapter. ISBN: 978-9282-22-845-9 38 under the Ministry of Education (MOE). These include the two universities; the University of Zambia (UNZA) and the Copperbelt University (CBU). In addition, there are 14 Teacher Training Colleges in the country of which 12 cater for the production of teachers for grades 1–7 and the other two for upper basic and high schools. The Natural Resources Development College also provides teachers for agricultural sciences. The second group comprises those colleges registered under the Technical Education, Vocational and Entrepreneurship Authority (TEVETA), which consist of 151 colleges offering diplomas in various fields. Roughly half of these colleges are private with the remaining 23 run by the government, religious organisations or the community. The number of students enrolled in these tertiary institutions numbered 24,648 in 2000 (GRZ, 2006). In order to execute the reforms, the then Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Science and Technology and Vocational Training established Education Boards throughout the country in Colleges of Education and Trades Training Institutes. This was a way of decentralising the financing and management of higher institutions of learning. The government through these Ministries introduced College Boards as a component of the decentralisation programme.
Inservice training , Education Policy--Zambia , Educational Decentralization--Zambia , financing education in Zambia