A defiant Ndlovu told the Zimbabwe Independent this week that the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education blundered in listing his college, the Zimbabwe Distance Education College (Zdeco), as one of the 106 institutions operating illegally.
Ndlovu argued that he would not bow to pressure from the ministry because his college was registered under the Ministry of Education, Sport, Art and Culture.
“Only the Zimbabwe Technical and Commercial College is registered under the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education and not Zdeco,” he said. “We have met with the permanent secretary of Higher Education (Washington Mbizwo). I am waiting for a correction by the government officials.”
Ndlovu said Zdeco would not close its doors even though it was one of the blacklisted institutions.
He said Zdeco was registered under the Ministry of Education, Sport, Art and Culture because it offered academic classes. However, Zdeco also has professional courses which fall under the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education.
Mbizwo could not immediately comment on the issue as he was said to be attending meetings yesterday.
In a notice, Mbizwo warned that legal action would be taken against colleges that continued operating without licences.
Ndlovu added the closure of Zdeco would inconvenience thousands of students enrolled at his institution.
“Some of the colleges that were closed were bogus and deserved to be shut down, but it’s a different case with Zdeco. We are a genuine college that has been operational since the 1980s and there is no way the college can run without a licence,” he said.
Ndlovu, also a former Information and Publicity minister, runs the private Zdeco in Harare, Bulawayo, Mutare and Gweru and has previously spoken highly of his dedication to education.
But on Monday, he became a victim of the government’s order to shut down 106 private colleges for operating without licences in accordance with the Manpower Planning and Development Act.
Private colleges have mushroomed in cities and towns with some, according to the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, operating from residential and shopping centres.