Jobless graduates plot to return degrees and demand fees refund

Sunday July 18 2021
pp02pix

Most graduates in Uganda end up unemployed for over three years. PHOTO/ILLUSTRATION

By Jacobs Odongo Seaman

One of the biggest mysteries of the world is that of smokers. One might be skunk broke but they will not lack a cigarette. And that has been the life of a friend called Kasirye, who claims that smoking helps him stay sober.

“I would have long run mad if not for smoking,” he said recently as he blew out a plume of smoke that could make the chimneys of drug incinerators envious.

“One day I decided to end my misery so I went to the swimming pool to jump in but I found the hotel plumbers were doing repairs and had drained the water. So I went to buy a rope but I got to the shop and realised I only had enough coin for a cigarette. That’s how I’m still alive.”

Kasirye holds a degree in Procurement and Logistics Management and a Master of Science in Procurement and Supply Chain Management from one of the public institutions in Kampala. He says he has written more applications than bees have visited flowers and that he tried his hands in business twice and still failed.

“Maybe you don’t have the skills to engage in a business,” I suggested.
“To manage, not to engage. Being in procurement, I once bought groceries and gave some boy to do the vending on a wheelbarrow but the idiot disappeared with everything after just one day,” he said.

While we were engrossed in this chitchat, news about the Zuma looting disguised as protests in South Africa flashed. Kasirye jumped on it.

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“Man, if I had a way, I would go to South Africa now and practice my procurement knowledge in the looting going on there instead,” Kasirye said. “I could even procure the entire Game Stores building with all its content and never worry about a dime again.”

“You can still go. That Dubai company Mixjet has supplied enough fuel for Uganda Airlines Bombardiers,” David said.
“Unfortunately, Nabbanja has not yet delivered on her promise. Besides, Shs100,000 can’t procure an air ticket,” Kasirye said.

He said South Africa was such a good place that during protests, it is the rioters who benefit in the end, unlike in Uganda where only security agents enjoy the show.

“The only thing we ever get here during protests are teargas, kiboko, and what the Leopard calls stray bullets, yet those Mzansi fellows might even forget and carry Cyril Ramaphosa with them during that looting spree if order is not restored,” our colleague David offered.

Grumbling some more, Kasirye said he had attempted to sell his transcripts but that no one expressed interest in them. 
The affable David immediately quipped, suggesting comically that Kasirye return the degrees to the university and demand a fee refund. 

He said fees were too high and that varsities are always fast to discontinue students who delay to pay fees, so they must be liable if the degrees they award continue to be useless like butt dimples.

“Sometimes you will fail to catch fish because it is a bad hook and in such a case, it is only proper that you sue the hook maker or demand refund and that’s what the many jobless graduates need to do to force universities to tailor courses that make sense,” he added.

This conversation took place on Sunday. On Monday afternoon, word filtered in that Kasirye had been detained by the university police after staging a protest demanding to see the academic registrar.

“He said he had been advised by a friend that he could return his degrees and get a fees refund to fund his air ticket to South Africa,” the OC CID investigating the made up matter said.

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