MONROVIA – Normal academic activities at Nimba County University have come to a standstill since January and continue to be suspended due to insufficient budgetary allotment from the national government since the university was elevated from a community college to university status.
By Franklin Doloquee/Nimba County
The head of the aggrieved faculty association at the university, Theophilus Younquoi, told reporters that they have expressed their concerns, but the government’s refusal to increase the university’s budget has led to their actions. He explained that their action would continue until their demands were met.
Younquoi stated that Nimba University was elevated to a full degree-granting university by an act of legislation in 2022, but since then, the university has not received sufficient financial support from the central government to run the university. The faculty, along with the administration, has lobbied with the Nimba legislative caucus and the Ministry of Finance for an increase in the budgetary allotment, but their efforts have yielded no results.
Younquoi lamented that the university is the second-highest tertiary public institution in the Republic of Liberia, with 19 different degree-granting programs, the highest number of enrolments, and more employees. Yet, the university received the least budgetary allotment in the 2021/2022 fiscal year. He accused the government of providing more budgetary allotment to the State University (University of Liberia), which received about 17,600.00 United States dollars, while the Tubman University in Maryland County received 5,500.00 United States dollars, and Nimba University received only 1,177.064 United States dollars.
The faculty is exerting all efforts to lobby members of the Nimba Legislature caucus and other stakeholders for an increment in the pending budget of 2023. However, they have not been able to secure such an allotment, which led them to go slow since January up to the present.
Our Nimba County correspondent has gathered reports that the university administration submitted a total budget of 5,999.00 for the 2023 budget year, but they were only able to receive half of the said allotment. The head of the Nimba County University faculty association noted that they have engaged the authorities responsible for such action for redress, but they were unable to seek support from the government, which led them to embark on such a strike, which has lasted for more than three months as they still demand more budgetary allotment from the national government towards the university.
When contacted, the president of Nimba County University, Dr Jessa Noah Mongrue, expressed hope that the government would increase the university’s budget. It was also reported that the president of the university lacked a vehicle to use since he took over the institution.