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Mak council declines to halt 15 percent fees hike

Makerere University

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Makerere University Council has declined to halt a 15 percent cumulative increase on tuition fees. However, it halted the increment on functional fees. Functional fees include registration, examination, library, development, technology fees and contribution towards the research fund.

Other fees forming part of the functional fees include internship/field attachment supervision fee, payment for a university identity card, rules booklet, caution, academic gown (red gown), guild fees, senior common room fees, sports contribution and endowment fee. These fees are paid in addition to tuition fees.

Makerere University Guild President Julius Kateregga says that the council failed to offer them their demand of halting the entire increment for review and only halted the increase on functional fees. In the fees structure projection, the functional fees had been raised from the initial 618,500 Shillings to 1.1 million shillings.

In an interview with URN shortly after the 11-hour-long council meeting held at the university Senate Building, Kateregga said they were disappointed by the decisions arrived at by the university council in disregard of the students demands to have tuition fees increment halted.

He said the university council also failed to pronounce itself on the reinstatement of the suspended students and revocation of all warning letters given to students during the week-long impasse at the university.

Three students remain on suspension. They include Siperia Mollie Saasiraabo, who is also the Guild Representative Councilor for the School of Psychology, Ojambo Wabwire and another yet-to-be-identified student.

Students had also demanded that Council grants them a chance to review the guild electoral regulations which was granted according to sources that attended the meeting.

“Council failed to make a decision on this citing they did not have a comprehensive report from the university management on the students and their records,” Kateregga said.

Students have also dispelled as regrettable, the claim by the education and sports minister that many of these those striking are sponsored by the government, MasterCard Foundation, State House while others are beneficiaries of the Higher Education Students Loan Scheme.

According to Kateregga, student’s leaders will convene on Wednesday morning to receive a report from their representatives in council and decide the way forward.

In another development, the University Council has ordered for the immediate investigation of Gordon Murangira, the Personal Assistant to the Vice-Chancellor and Prof. Eria Hisali, the Principal of the College of Business and Management Sciences, for their involvement in the student violence meted on them by security forces.

Students accuse the two of posturing as security agents who reportedly sanctioned the military raids and subsequent brutalization of students in the students’ halls of residence.

Daniel Fred Kidega, the Vice-Chairperson of Council has been nominated to spearhead the investigations. He will work jointly with Jolly Uzamukunda Karabaaya, the Commissioner Higher Education, Dr Fredrick Kitoogo, the Director of planning, Research & Development at NITA-U and William Ndoleriire, a representative Ministry of Finance, Planning & Economic Development on the university council.

President Museveni had earlier in the day ordered the withdraw of the Military Police from the university following condemnation from the public that security forces raided students’ residents and brutalized them.

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URN

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