‘Makerere lecturers gave secret exam to students who failed’
Posted Thursday, January 17 2013 at 02:50
Top management has asked college principals, their deputies and registrars to hand in names of lecturers who submit marks late.
Makerere University lecturers reportedly conducted secret supplementary examinations to pass Urban Planning students, who had failed core course units, our investigations show.
The supplementary papers’ records indicate that the papers done at the College of Humanities and Social Sciences were given without the approval of the academic registrar and the College board after more than half of students on the programme failed the Basic Land Surveying course unit.
Out of the 138, who had been admitted in 2009, 84 students failed the Third Year course.
Ms Hasifa Kabejja, the CHUSS communication officer, explained that during the restructuring in 2009, Urban Planning was repackaged and shifted to College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology.
However, it was agreed that those students, who were already admitted on the course in the then faculty of Arts would first go through the process. She said this has contributed to the confusion in the department.
“Urban Planning is a special case. The students got retakes in second semester of Second Year and they were given an examination by their lecturer last semester without approval from academic registrar contrary to the policy.
This is being handled by the vice chancellor and academic registrar because it was illegal and the students won’t graduate,” Ms Kabejja said in an interview.
The students had already warmed up for the 63rd graduation ceremony due next week. Out of the frustration, they petitioned Prof. John Ssentamu Ddumba, the university vice chancellor, seeking that they are included in the graduation booklet.
However, according to Ms Kabejja, some students have been cleared but those who had retakes and missing marks have to be patient because the process is long.
“If you get a retake in first semester of first year, why don’t you follow up to ensure the marks are in records after redoing it? But they come two weeks to graduation day. They forget it’s a process to verify them.
We have managed to clear some. Those who haven’t should be considerate and wait for 2014. As much as the university is to blame, students should also own up. Lecturers are also human,” she added.
Dr Derek Muhwezi, the Urban Planning coordinator, said while the paper has been failed by many students before, this time it was given as a mop-up examination since they were the last batch in the college.
He said he had been shown the green light by the head of department.
“We gave this test so that we can clear them. Under normal circumstances, they should have done the paper next semester and I used to tell them that if you graduate, it will be a bonus,” Dr Muhwezi said.