Kampala University Vice Chancellor Badru Kateregga yesterday asked Ugandans to produce many children so that private investors in higher education institutions can stay in business.
Speaking at the university’s 13th graduation ceremony, Prof Kateregga also announced that the institution had finally received a charter from government recognising it as a fully-fledged university legally mandated to offer higher education in the country.
According to Prof Kateregga, the Education ministry sent the charter documents and National Council for Higher Education recommendations to the President on February 12, who then approved the charter on March 22.
“Please produce more children so that we remain in business. You graduands of 2016 cohort have made history by being the first lot to graduate under a fresh charter. There were the usual powerful negative forces that fought our achievements by blocking the charter process,” the excited Kateregga told parents at the Ggaba-based university.
He added: “In March 2015, the Quality Assurance and Accreditation finally accepted our application for a grant of a charter. Note that the charter applies retrospectively to cover all those who graduated since 2003.”
A total of 2,546 students received certificates, diplomas and degrees in various disciplines. Of these, 40.8per cent were female. However, over 500 students could not graduate because they had not cleared their fees. At least five university staff graduated with support from the university, which, however, warned that they will be bonded first before they can apply their expertise elsewhere. Most of the university students are from Kenya and Rwanda.
Ms Jane Wanjiku, Bachelor of Education graduate, said she left Kenya to seek for a quality but cheap university education in Uganda. However, she revealed that some Kenyan universities had started reducing on their tuition because institutions in the neighbouring countries had started opening universities at a cheaper price.
“At first, it was cheap for me to study in Uganda. But now, some Kenyan universities like Mount Kenya, have reduced on the fees because they see Ugandan universities which have branches in Kenya like Kampala University as competitors,” she said.
The Chancellor Prof Edward Rugumayo, asked the graduands not to forget people who have supported them through their education. He asked them to ensure they serve the less fortunate people in society by promoting justice. “At a time of so much uncertainty and cynicism, let us work even harder to nurture confidence, hope, optimism and trust as we build and nurture our collective competence and as we challenge and drive out corruption in societies and in private corporate life,” he said.