KAMPALA. As a total of 14,895 Makerere University students prepare to receive their awards in different academic disciplines today, 53 of them have been removed from the graduation list following allegations that their marks were altered.
Victory Yesu Ayee, a Bachelor of Environmental Science student, was yesterday glued at the university’s academic registrar’s (AR) office waiting for an explanation from Mr Alfred Masikye Namoah, the AR, on why her name was removed yet she was already in the booklet.
She admitted that she didn’t appear on the first two draft graduation lists the university released prior the printing of the final booklet.
“My name was not on the first and second graduation lists. I had not yet received my project marks but I later got and it was uploaded online,” Ms Ayee said, declining to give details on when she submitted her project for marking. Makerere University yesterday advertised the students whose names were removed from the graduation list.
The college registrar, Mr Edward Obura, yesterday said it was erroneous to have Ayee’s name on the graduation list since both the school and college boards didn’t approve her project marks.
“Her special project marks came in late and they were not discussed during the board meetings. I think it was an error because all the results must be approved before one is cleared for graduation,” Mr Obura said.
He said that when they received the results, they were uploaded on the university system which could have incidentally picked her name and included it in the booklet. Prof John Ddumba-Ssentamu, the university vice chancellor, yesterday said they will continue scrutinising the list and all students who fall short of the university’s minimum requirements will be barred from graduating.
In his statement, Mr Namoah said the students were withdrawn after his office discovered that their academic records were altered. The affected students are expected to appear before the university organs for further investigations.
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science has the highest number of affected students followed by Bachelor of Tourism and Master of Environment and Natural Resources.
Others include six students from Bachelor of Information Systems, four from Bachelor of Information Technology, three from Bachelor of Software Engineering while Bachelor of Environmental Science, Bachelor of Adult and community Education and Bachelor of Biotechnology had each one student affected.
In 2015, an internal Makerere University probe confirmed that at least 418 students manipulated the academic system and had their results illegally altered for better grades either with the help of their colleagues or in connivance with university officials. The report showed that some individuals hack into the results system by accessing rights for examination coordinators, school or college registrars.
“The alteration of marks involves a wider racket of hackers within the university. It includes change of a student’s final mark from a lower mark, that is not necessarily a retake, to a higher mark in order to improve the cumulative grade point average,” reads part of the report titled “report on alteration of marks in Makerere University”.
The College of Business and Management Science had the highest number of students with altered marks at 113, followed by Engineering Design Art and Technology with 75 students, School of Applied Statistics and Planning had 65 while 24 students were from College of Computing and Information Science.
The College of Natural Sciences had 12 cases, nine students from School of Law and College of Education and External Studies with six students. However, three years later, the team which was instituted to call for further hearing has never started its work because the university couldn’t give them Shs300million in time to finish their work.
Prof John Ddumba-Ssentamu, the university vice chancellor, yesterday said they will continue scrutinising the list and all students who fall short of the university’s minimum requirements will be barred from graduating.