The Department of Higher Education and Training is currently conducting a feasibility study for the establishment of two new universities.
This could ensure that millions of students have access to tertiary education in the coming years. The Steering Committee to conduct the study was set up in April 2021.
The committee, which meets monthly, consists of representatives from the South African Police Service, National Research Foundation, City of Ekurhuleni, City of Tshwane, Universities of South Africa, Tshwane University of Technology, Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University, University of Pretoria, University of Johannesburg and the University of the Witwatersrand
“A Project Manager was appointed in August 2021 to manage activities related to the feasibility study, including to assemble a team of specialists required and manage their outputs” explained the department.
There are also efforts underway to strengthen the capabilities of historically disadvantaged universities.
This effort will be called the Professor Sibusiso Bhengu Development programme.
The department explained, “The Historically Disadvantaged Institutions (HDI’s) are universities which were established as non-white universities following the recommendations of the Eisleen Commission in 1959, by the extension of the University Education Act of 1959 which specifically prohibited racially integrated education except in exceptional/ extraordinary cases”.
These exceptional or extraordinary cases needed to be approved by the Apartheid government.
Institutions that were identified as HDIs were the University of Fort Hare, University Limpopo, University of Venda, Walter Sisulu University, The University of the Western Cape, University of Zululand, Mangosuthu University of Technology and Sefako Makgatho Health Science University.