Ground-breaking projects are currently underway at the University of Zululand (UNIZULU) and the latest of these is the drilling of three boreholes, for the university’s use, with the capacity to supply the institution with enough water for decades to come.

The university’s vice-chancellor, Professor Xoliswa Mtose, said this will help deal with key challenges en route to creating a good teaching and learning environment for both students and staff.
She noted that the university had identified six strategic priorities for the period 2016 – 2021. These included accelerating infrastructure projects.

The borehole project has been expedited because the city of uMhlathuze has struggled to secure the university with a constant supply of water. In dealing with the deadly Covid-19 virus, it became
imperative that we make sure that water is always available on campus so that the UNIZULU community can be able to wash their hands constantly and help us fight the spread of the virus.
While the boreholes will not replace the water from the city, they will at least make sure that water security is guaranteed at all times for our university.
“Investment in post-secondary infrastructure is an investment in South Africa’s next generation of students and researchers. Improving the spaces where students live and providing to the basic
necessities such as water place will fuel prosperity for years to come,” said Executive
Director: Infrastructure, Thabani Mncwango Director of New Built, Shati Phakoane, said the project will make sure that the university has an uninterrupted supply of water. “We also hope that in the long term, the university might also see a financial benefit in the savings as we look forward to generating income streams from having our own source of water,” he added.

There are several projects and initiatives under the university’s Physical Planning and Operations office. The following are worth-mentioning:

  • Infrastructure implementation, design features, new sock and refurbishments
  • Covid-19 facility and infrastructure priorities
  • The facilities management plan
  • The organisational design processes: remodelling PPO for performance improvements and excellence
  • Maintenance project
  • Production of an in-house hand sanitiser
  • Covid-19 business plan
  • Integrated works management system

By Gcina Nhleko