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Minister Lugolobi tells Makerere to be transparent, share data

State Minister for Finance and Planning Amos Lugolobi speaks at the launch of the Makerere University Data Repository System (MakData) on  April 4. Photo | Busein Samilu

What you need to know:

  • Mr Lugolobi said that adopting transparent data governance practices and ensuring the ethical use of data will help both the university and the government during planning.

The State Minister for Finance and Planning, Mr Amos Lugolobi has asked the leadership of Makerere University to always be transparent and share data with the government for effective planning.

While launching the Makerere Data Repository System (MakData) at the University on Thursday, Mr Lugolobi said that adopting transparent data governance practices and ensuring the ethical use of data will help both the university and the government during planning.

“As our society becomes increasingly reliant on data-driven approaches, institutions like ours must have robust systems in place to manage and harness the power of data effectively,” he said.

The launched MakData system will consolidate data from the various university-managed systems in real time and generate reports for decision-making.

These systems are; Academic Management Information System (ACMIS), Library Management System, Employee Human Resource Management System, Grants Management System, and Finance Management System.

Assoc. Prof Robert Wamala, Deputy Director Directorate of Research and Graduate Training (Partnerships and Innovation) and the project Principal Investigator said that the system addresses issues such as delayed reporting, data inconsistencies, data silos, failure to report, and errors in reporting from user departments using separate systems.

“MakData system does not duplicate or replace functionalities from existing systems; rather, it mines data and consolidates it to produce integrated reports about a specific domain for quick executive decision support,” he said.

Minister Lugolobi said that administrative data like the launched MakData, plays a critical role in official statistics by complementing survey data, enhancing its accuracy and reliability.

“Leveraging administrative data sources is essential for producing high-quality, timely, and relevant official statistics that inform public policy, guide decision-making, and support evidence-based interventions to address societal needs,” he said.

Prof Barnabas Nawangwe, the University Vice Chancellor in a speech read by his vice in-charge of Finance and Administration, Assoc Prof Henry Alinaitwe said that centralizing data storage and management will enable researchers to have easy access to the information they need in real-time from one streamlined source.

 “At Makerere University, research is not merely an academic pursuit; it is a cornerstone of the institution's identity and mission. The university's research-led approach permeates every aspect of its academic programs, shaping curricula, guiding teaching methodologies, and inspiring students to engage in critical inquiry and discovery,” he said.

Prof Fred Masagazi Masaazi, the Chairperson of Makerere University – Research and Innovations Fund (Mak-Rif) Grants Management Committee said that the system is one of the projects that are being funded under the Innovation and Research Fund by the government.

“Let us all further explore, embrace, and leverage partnerships to write winning proposals so that we can leverage additional funds and support the work we are doing. It is also important that we work towards scaling to the market the research and innovation outputs emanating from the ongoing work at Makerere University but also in the country in general,” he said.