UCE: Head teacher arrested over misusing funds for chemical reagents

Examination scouts check UCE candidates at Mityana College Kikumbi before entering the room to sit their Physics practical Paper on October 15, 2018. PHOTO BY JESSICA NABUKENYA

What you need to know:

  • At least 323, 129 candidates are sitting their UCE exams.
  • There are 3,453 examination centres across the country.

The Uganda Certificate of Education (UCE) examinations kicked off well on Monday in many districts in central region except in Kyotera where police arrested a school head teacher who allegedly misappropriated money for candidates.

The head teacher of St. Raphael Secondary School –Kabira, Kyotera District, reportedly misused Shs7m which was meant to buy chemical reagents used during practical examinations.
Candidates at the school delayed to start their first paper (Physics Paper 3) after waiting for about two hours for the school administrators to bring the chemical reagents to use during the paper, in vain.
It took the intervention of the school management committee members to mobilize funds to buy reagents for candidates to use during the examination.

Mr Musa Kayongo , the Kyotera District police commander said police were
forced to arrest the school head teacher after failing to explain why he did not buy the reagents in time candidates paid for the items.
In his statement at police, the suspect claimed that he lent out part of thefunds to some members of the school board whom he could not name but they delayed to refund the money.
Mr Kayongo said the suspect is likely to face charges of fraud when police investigations into the matter are complete.

Mr Mathias Kigoye, the Kyotera District Education Officer condemned the head teacher’s conduct, saying it taints the image of school heads in the district. Apart from this incident, exams on the first day went on smoothly in other schools in the district, according to Mr Kigoye.
In Mubende, some head teachers were concerned about some candidates who started sitting their exams without clearing all school dues.
According to Mr Julius Kansiime, the head teacher Mubende Army SS, 60 out of the 194 UCE candidates have debts with the school.
“Previously, government used to provide us with chemical reagents, but this was phased out, so, we ended up using borrowed money to be able to run these examinations.” He said.

Students of Kalisizo Progressive SS during Physics practical Paper on October 15, 2018. PHOTO BY MALIK FAHAD JJINGO

He said out of the total number (194) of registered UCE candidates, only one failed to show up on the first day.
For some of the schools in Mityana with big student populations, candidates wrote their papers in shifts. Mumusa High School head teacher, Mr Joseph Kawuki said they made a special arrangement for candidates and all will be fed on a special meal during the examination period.
In Mpigi, the district education officer, Mr Deogratius Ssekyore said exam materials reached at most centres in time and majority of the candidates reported early enough to sit their first paper.
"It has been a good start and we just pray that all goes well throughout the entire examination period," he said.

Southern Regional Police Commander, Lameck Kigozi said by 4pm, no serious incidents had been registered in the area.
“Our team together with UNEB officials are on the ground and we have not experienced any incident worth reporting about in Masaka, expect in Kyotera where a head teacher misused some money for candidates,” he said
By most schools in Wakiso District like Trinity College Nabbingo , Kings College Budo, Hope Boarding SS, Lutembe SS , Buddo SS, Galaxy College Wakiso, Nsangi Secondary school, St. Lawrence Colleges, Mugwanya Summit College ,Kyengera, had by 9:15am candidates by started their first paper .
Mr Henry Ssempinja, the Wakiso District education officer warned schools in the district against engaging in examination malpractices, insisting that any candidate caught would have his papers cancelled.
He tasked invigilators to report all school heads who entice them with gifts and money to help their students during exams.

UNEB was in the past face with a challenge of massive leakages. However, this vice has slightly reduced of late although impersonation, teachers and invigilators helping students in exams are still rampant.
Kalangala District Education Officer, Mr Emmanuel Nseko said the first day went on well with no cases of malpractices reported and exams materials were delivered in time at most centres.
“The first day has been smooth and we pray that the entire exam period goes like that,” he said.

A total of 323, 129 candidates are sitting their UCE exams at 3,453 examination centres across the country.
On Tuesday, candidates will sit for Chemistry Paper III in the morning, followed by Music Aural Paper I and Power and Energy Paper II in the afternoon.

Complied by Malik Fahd Jjingo,Wilson Kutamba, Sadat Mbogo, Joseph Kiggundu, Ambrose Musasizi ,Jessica Nabukenya ,Josephine Nnabbaale & Denis Mubiru.