Zimbabwean prosecutors have charged 11 student leaders for breach of the peace or bigotry following protests held in the capital Harare in February. The trial has highlighted possible divisions between moderates and hardliners in President Robert Mugabe's government.
A law that allows the authorities of the University of Ghana to prevent people who are not members of the institution from entering its premises has come under attack on several fronts, after a booth was erected at the main entrance to control road use.
Student unrest has broken out in Burundi, where students went on strike over reform of their grant system. And in Cote d'Ivoire, students have been protesting over lack of housing – 18 months after universities reopened after two years of closure.
Nearly 100 staff at the University of Dar es Salaam have benefited from a German government-supported initiative to assist staff to obtain postgraduate degrees, as the institution pushes to improve the qualifications of its academics.
Senegal's higher education union SAES has written a letter of protest to the president of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, after the bank's country director claimed salaries of Senegalese lecturers were five times higher than those of academics in the United States, and called for them to be reduced.
Two animal rights and anti-vivisection organisations, the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection and Animal Defenders International, have called on the Mauritius government to halt the export of macaque monkeys to laboratories abroad for experimentation.
Public universities in Benin were recently closed in protest against human rights abuses and corruption. The country's three academic unions joined an indefinite strike by civil servants that paralysed the public sector from late last year.
An alumni association has been launched by Botswana's newest private university, with the aim of linking its staff and students to the country's well-do-to resource-based economy.
A middle-level private college is set to make history in Kenya later this year when it transforms into a university – a first for a private college in the East African country.
The University of the Witwatersrand will from this year host five new chairs in the areas of migration, diversity and health under the prestigious South African Research Chairs Initiative.
This year James Ngugi, a primary school teacher, should have begun enjoying the fruits of his ‘labour’ and recouping some of the money spent studying for a diploma in early childhood development, a popular course for teachers keen on improving their lot.
Tanzania’s government has spent Sh61.2 billion (US$38 million) on rehabilitating agricultural research institutions and on the Nelson Mandela African Institute of Science and Technology. The aim is to increase higher education and research capacity so that the country can become self-sufficient in scientific expertise.
Kenya is set to begin construction of the facility that will house the East Africa satellite campus of the Pan African University – the higher education flagship project of the African Union – at the host Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology.
Zambia is to start constructing a military university by the end of this year, as the country prioritises defence and security studies. The decision follows the establishment of a military university in September last year by neighbouring Zimbabwe.
The Regional Initiative in Science and Education, RISE – a major project aimed at boosting higher education in Africa in sciences and engineering through postgraduate training in university-based networks – has been granted US$5 million for three years from its major donor.
The Dar es Salaam campus of Tanzania’s Mzumbe University, in collaboration with Stellenbosch University in South Africa, is preparing masters degrees in managing huge projects in mining, gas and oil. Tanzania is exploring gas deposits found recently, and has sent students to Brazil for oil- and gas-related studies.
Malawi has crafted a Higher Education Students' Loan Bill that will benefit students attending both public and accredited private universities. Previously, only students at state-run universities could access loans.
Medical students at the Catholic University of Health and Allied Sciences in Mwanza, Tanzania, have protested against the low funding they receive from the government, saying it is far less than the charges the university imposes. This is a widespread problem for students at private institutions.
A United Kingdom-funded £4.85 million (US$7.9 billion) programme on researching impacts of climate change in Sub-Saharan Africa was launched recently, aimed at boosting African research capacity and the number of climate change papers published by Africans in international journals.
Algeria and South Africa have agreed to set up a regional research centre for biotechnology, in an effort to boost research and skills training in this field in their and other African countries.
Zimbabwean lecturers are to initiate a test case in the Constitutional Court, established six months ago to protect academic, labour and other rights. Their decision to act came after the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology defied court orders to reverse its decision to suspend, fine or transfer 31 lecturers following a strike.
Egypt has launched a development plan, Egypt 2022, which stresses the importance of higher education in sustainable, knowledge-based economic development.
The government of Tanzania has bowed to pressure from a group of prospective university students who called on the Higher Education Students’ Loan Board to provide them with funding for the new academic year after many qualifying students missed receiving loans.
The University of Namibia’s Professor Benjamin Mapani has been appointed the first African to chair the influential Commission on Geoscience for Environmental Management of the International Union of Geological Sciences.
A new university that aims to add depth to the abilities, professionalism and intellectual capacity of the South African Police Service will open next year in Paarl near Cape Town.