With Guyana poised to receive approximately US$300M from its oil wealth next year, past Registrar of the University of Guyana (UG) Vincent Alexander believes that a portion of it could be used to comfortably fund free tertiary education.
Alexander, who spent over 25 years at the university, made this position known during a recent interview with Guyana Standard.
The official shared that recurrent expenditure for UG is in the vicinity of $5B, hence his conviction that it is feasible for part of the US$300M (which is equivalent to $62.7B) to be used for such a purpose.
Alexander said that while this is desirable, there is still the question of ensuring that the beneficiaries give back to Guyana.
The former registrar said, “Every time we train someone and they leave, we are financing the development of another country. We have to see it in those terms…There must be some arrangement in place where the beneficiary is asked to serve his or her country for a number of years. This can be in the form of self-employment, in the nongovernmental sector and or in the public service.”
Like Alexander, Leader of the Alliance For Change, Raphael Trotman, had told the Guyana Standard that the party does support the recommendation for free tertiary education. Also on board for this is the Guyana Trades Union Congress.
The government and the Energy Department have not yet confirmed if this will occur, nor have they published or outlined a plan of action in this regard.