Opposition Forum for Democratic Change has called for the overhaul of the entire Ministry of Education and Sports, as a way of solving Uganda’s education conundrum.
While addressing journalists today at Najjanankumbi, Ibrahim Semujju Nganda the party’s spokesperson raised concern on the low primary completion rates and ill equipped graduates, issues that he said need to be urgently worked upon.
Semujju who is also the Kiira municipality legislator took a dig at Rosemary Nansubuga Seninde, the State Minister for Primary Education and John Chrysestom Muyingo the State Minister for Higher Education whom he partly blamed for failing to advise government on policy issues.
“We cannot achieve anything when we have an education sector run by someone who is incompetent; that is where the problem starts. Instead of advising government, ministers Seninde and Muyingo are just acting as aides to the Minister of Education and Sports. That is why our graduates are going to Qatar to work as house girls”, he says.
Despite enrolling over 500,000 primary pupils in the 2016/2017 financial year, the Primary seven completion rate dropped by 0.1% to 61.5% in the same year from 61.6% the previous financial year according to a 2017 report by the Ministry of education and sports titled “The education and sports sector annual performance report: financial year 2016/17”.
Semujju also lashed out at government over its delay in remitting over Shs 2.9 billion salary arrears owed to Makerere University lecturers something he said calls for attention.
“The concern for FDC is that you lecturers on strike because the government cannot find 2.9 billion yet it’s the same government which is squandering tax payers money”, he explains.
In relation to this, Semujju took time to criticize Makerere University vice chancellor Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe’s high handed approach which he said is to blame for the current teaching staff upheaval at Uganda’s oldest institute. According to Semujju, the solving Makerere’s problems require diplomacy rather than authoritarian tendencies.
“Suspending lecturers for sex for marks and insubordination is reasonable. However Nawangwe should know that Makerere’s problems shall not end by threatening and suspending lecturers only”, Semujju points out.