By Robert A. Emmanuel
The University of the West Indies (UWI) Five Islands Campus is reported to be the beneficiary of a major financial injection.
The Cabinet of Antigua and Barbuda announced, in an amendment yesterday to its weekly notes circulated the day before, that a wealthy contributor has donated US $5 million to the newly established fourth landed campus.
Immediately following the announcement, the Cabinet instructed the Treasury Department to disburse EC $10 million to the University Fund, launched in late June by Prime Minister Gaston Browne when he made a personal donation to the university.
When OBSERVER media contacted the Chief of Staff in the Office of the Prime Minister, Lionel Hurst, for more information about the recent donation, he responded thus: “He [the donor] was appointed as Antigua and Barbuda’s Ambassador to Kuwait, I think.
“As a consequence, the Treasury was asked to dispatch EC $10 million to the UWI Fourth Campus Fund, which was established at the end of June when the Prime Minister contributed EC $100,000. Others have since contributed … and we anticipate even more contributors coming forward that will help to make possible the fourth landed campus as a well-funded campus in Antigua,” Hurst said.
Meantime, according the post-Cabinet notes, Minister of Education Michael Browne updated his colleagues on the progress of work currently being undertaken to ensure the September 2019 opening of UWI Five Islands.
“The Cabinet was assured that the work is on track, not to be derailed,” the communiqué stated. “While the UWI system is being employed to ensure similarities among the campuses, Antigua and Barbuda is positioning itself to carve out special niches that would make the campus here a very attractive place for studying certain subjects.
“In due course, the Mount St. John Medical Center is seeking to make itself an accredited teaching hospital, satisfying all the UWI requirements. The ICT work to make the Fourth Campus connected to the existing three campuses, is near completion.”