Dakar region’s second public university inaugurated

The new University Amadou Mahtar Mbow has been inaugurated by President Macky Sall in the new town of Diamniadio, about 30km from Senegal’s capital, Dakar.

The creation of the second public university in the Dakar region falls under the remit of a project focusing on the governance and finance of higher education drawn up by the Senegalese government with the World Bank to improve efficiency and quality of the higher education and research system, and the supervision of universities and their obligation to widen access to higher education by creating new universities, reported Sud Quotidien.

Sall said the university would “strengthen the ‘brain’ of Diamniadio, by reinforcing its intellectual and scientific hub, and so contributing to its mission as a modern, multifunctional and inclusive society”, reported Sud Quotidien.

He emphasised it was “a new university institution, futuristic in its conception and achievement, which is equipped with, among other amenities, educational facilities offering 3,000 places, a lecture theatre of 1,500 places, a big library, laboratories and administrative blocks”.

The university is named in honour of Amadou Mahtar Mbow, former Senegalese minister for education and culture, and director-general of UNESCO from 1974 to 1987. He is now aged 101.

During the ceremony, Dr Awa Mbow Kane paid tribute to her father, who had “made his mark in his time because he brought a fervour to learn, a passion to read, a thirst for knowledge”, reported Sud Quotidien. She urged the university’s community to adopt his determination, love of knowledge and sense of engagement.

Mbow Kane said that, to instil his enthusiasm in the students, her father had donated 10,000 books to the university library, a collection that he had built up over many years, reported All Africa.

Sall also used the occasion to announce that the fund for the Macky Sall prize for Scientific Research had passed FCFA2 billion (US$3.2 million), reported All Africa.

This, he said, would enable African researchers to concentrate more on African problems. For the current second edition it would award FCFA 100 million to fund three projects on the theme ‘Resilience of economies in the CAMES [African and Malagasy Council for Higher Education] member countries in international crises’. — Compiled by Jane Marshall.

This article is drawn from local media. University World News cannot vouch for the accuracy of the original reports.