Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Makerere University has suspended four students belonging to the National Unity Platform-NUP party for allegedly holding a demonstration at Freedom Square last Friday. The affected students are Mwesigwa Calvin Mugambwa, Bbosa Edwin Price, and Katushabe Kenneth who are vying for the NUP party ticket to run for the Makerere University guild presidential seat.
In his June 27th suspension letter, Makerere University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Barnabas Nawangwe accuses the students of engaging in acts of demonstration when they organized a NUP Makerere Chapter General Assembly on July 24th, at which the respective aspiring candidates were expected to address fellow students. The police arrested the 4 student leaders on their way to Freedom Square.
Prof. Nawangwe says the students have been suspended on grounds of indiscipline contrary to the Makerere University Regulation 9. It provides that “Demonstrations either within or outside the university shall be held only in accordance with the laws of Uganda provided the Vice-Chancellor has been informed at least 24 hours in advance and police permission has been obtained.”
He directs the students to vacate the university premises indefinitely until investigations into their conduct are completed for them to appear before the disciplinary committee. NUP Secretary-General, David Lewis Rubongoya, who was expected to preside over the rally, says the NUP party condemns the suspension of its student members, saying this is very unfortunate and a deliberate attempt to target NUP candidates.
“The deliberate targeting of NUP candidates in the guild race is not only unfair, but it is also illegal, cowardly, and high-handed. Makerere University students must be allowed to select leaders of their choice. Our legal team has been requested to study this matter and pursue means of setting aside the illegal actions. We hope for now, that the authorities at the University will reconsider this decision,” said Rubongoya.
He says that the party’s legal team has been requested to study the suspension by the university to take appropriate action.