Prof. Yakub Mulla: MEPI Principal Investigator; Dean of Postgraduate Studies, University of Zambia, Zambia
Mulla, Prof. Yakub
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Zambia is a country that attained independence in 1964. Two years later, in ‘66, the new medical school began, and population of Zambia has increased now from 4 million to 13 million. One of the failures of government has been the failure to increase the number of training, the training capacity for medical students. And for 45 years, even though it was initially in the health, strategic health plan to increase the number of spaces and to increase the training capacity for training medical graduates, there was no government drive to take up that initiative. I personally, as Dean of the School of Medicine over time had an opportunity to speak to three previous Ministers of Health, and I discussed with them whether it was possible for government to start a new medical school in Ndola. And I tried to convince them and make a point. But none of those ministers, including some of them that were doctors, could take up that initiative. In the last government just as MEPI came in, the new Minister of Health was an engineer. He was very energetic, young and over a conference on AIDs in Namibia, I had an opportunity to speak to him over a cup of tea and I told him of the health strategic plan and how we should have had a new medical school many years earlier, and that for 45 years government had not had a plan to start a new medical school.
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