A university has a purpose. It should have the aim of being a depository of all knowledge known to humankind. It is supposed to provide the students with a serene environment that is free from the storm and stress of everyday life. It is supposed to have students who are adequately provided for in terms of their personal needs as well as their learning needs.
This requires allocation of state resources. It is important that a nation must properly calculate the amount of resources that must come from the public purse to provide what the students need in order to operate a university that is fit for purpose.
What is clear in The Gambia is that no preparation was made to establish a university in the first republic. The second Republic started with an extension programme to give university education to deserving students. Instead of utilizing the period of gestation to accumulate the resources needed to build a campus that is fit for purpose and build the ground for a homegrown university, existing tertiary institutions were hastily refurbished and transformed into the infrastructure of a homegrown university.
It has trapped students in an environment that cannot be considered to be adequately conducive to get the type of education they fully deserve. Hence students are now faced with the option of trying their best to get the best education out of inferior educational infrastructure and environment or put the spanner in the wheel and have no education at all.
Luckily the students of 2021 are faced with an election year which will enable them to influence and determine the future of the University of The Gambia. They now have the power to move from protest to actually determine what type of university they need post 2021. The decision is theirs for them to make and the leaders are there for them to determine. The future is there for them. The type of university they will have after 2021 will depend on the type of programme on education of the different political parties that they choose to support.