There is no end in sight to the severe financial problems that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s (KPK) public sector universities are currently facing.
Research claims that the financial crisis is putting up to 20 public sector universities in danger of closing. According to the report, their liabilities and losses have surpassed Rs. 7 billion.
First and foremost, a trail of poor administration was left behind when these institutions were established due to insufficient preparation.
In all, 29 universities—four of which are in Swat alone—were quickly established around the province.
Their very existence is now in danger due to the unanticipated expansion that has put a strain on money and resources.
Their financial problems have been made worse by disagreements over how to distribute resources fairly among the universities, which has compounded the dilemma.
The confusion is exacerbated by the fact that numerous institutions lack vice-chancellors.
Twelve universities have been without permanent VCs since March 2023, while eight universities are being governed by Pro-VCs.
In addition, a leadership vacancy is anticipated when the terms of eight additional VCs expire later this year.
In this precarious scenario, academic staff at several universities have not received their paychecks, and administrative activities at universities such as Women University Swabi, Lucky Marwat, Khushal Khan University, Karak, and Agriculture University DI Khan have stopped.
The paper also emphasizes how academic programs are mismanaged.
Following the elimination of private B.A. and M.A. degrees, universities launched BS programs, which are not in line with the educational demands of students.
To make matters worse financially, institutions have been renting out their buildings for less than market value.
To prevent these public sector universities from closing, pertinent authorities must respond to this worrying situation right away.
Ensuring the sustainability and quality of higher education in KPK requires the implementation of urgent financial and administrative reforms.