The Visitation Committee into the state of affairs at Makerere has recommended to President Yoweri Museveni that in order for them to carry out meaningful investigation, the university needs to reopen.
Makerere Visitation Committee chairperson Dr Abel Rwendeire made the request while addressing journalists at Uganda Media Centre on Tuesday.
Rwendeire noted that though the president had indicated that during their work time the university would remain closed, as a committee they think it is important to do their assignment with the university open to observe its operations as part of their investigations.
“We expressed to the president that at some future times the university be reopened to make our work a little more productive. The president said he would consider our request but the issue of reopening the university is a bit complicated. We think he is still making some consultations,”said Rwendeire.
Museveni closed the university on November 1 after it had been marred by unending strikes ranging from teaching staff to students. The ‘visitation committee’ is to look into the source of problem, and recommend possible solutions.
Rwendeire expressed optimism that the university may be reopened soon basing on the assessment of the situation. He noted that the committee had started its work by drawing a work plan after meeting the top management.
Rwendeire listed some of the terms of reference as governance and institutional building, academic affairs, students’ affairs and staff affairs and others.
He added that the committee is determined to ensure that the future of the university is brighter by providing comprehensive solutions to all challenges.
Rwendeire said that they will also consider recommendations of past committees like the 2014 Omaswa report compiled by Professor Francis Omaswa, but in their report they will demand that recommendations be implemented in a specific period.
Besigye threatens national protests of Makerere
Meanwhile, former presidential candidate Dr Kizza Besigye issued a 10 day ultimatum for the university to be reopened, failure to which he would mobilize for nationwide protests.
Besigye told journalists at his home in Kasangati that parents and students had been subjected to unnecessary suffering and had made tremendous losses due to the closure of the university.
Besigye noted that the probe committee chaired by Dr. Abel Rwendeire was wastage of public funds because the problems are well documented in the Omaswa committee which the government failed to implement.