Busoga University is ready to reopen as a government institution, four years after its licence was revoked by the National Council for Higher Education (NCHE), the president of the University Alumni Association, Mr Godfrey Baisi Ndada, has said
While brandishing a December 21, 2020 letter, addressed to the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education and Sports from Dr Kenneth Omona, the Principal Private Secretary to President Museveni, Mr Ndada on Wednesday said the Church had finalised the process of handing over the university and land to government.
“We have received the November 30, 2020 attachment addressed to His Excellency the President, by the Alumni Association of Busoga University, regarding government takeover of Busoga University.
“I am, therefore, forwarding to you the said letter for your further management,” Mr Omona’s letter reads in part.
Asked to provide a tentative date when the university would open, Mr Ndada said: “As soon as government reopens schools.”
Government closed schools last year in order to curb the spread of coronavirus.
In a statement issued by the Media Centre on Tuesday, Primary Six pupils, Senior Three and Senior Five students can report to school in the short term to ensure progression.
However, the statement adds that nursery schools will remain closed because the learners are prone to respiratory infections and it is hard to ensure that they observe standard operating procedures.r Patrick Kayemba, the outgoing Iganga District chairperson, who was a member of the university’s transitional committee, said this has always been their desire (to have the University reopened).
“There is a recommendation from the President for the university to operate although there are some procedures established for a public university to follow before it can start operating,” Mr Kayemba said.
He added: “There is what they call White Paper and a resolution from Parliament; therefore, it has to be approved by the Parliament which has to create a budget provision allowing the university to fully operate as a government institution.”
Mr Andrew Ngobi, who had a son at the university, said the closure adversely affected students, hostel owners, transporters and lectures, among others.
Mr Ngobi said the university closure was one of the reasons President Museveni scored 36 per cent from Busoga Sub-region during the January presidential election.
In December 2017, the NCHE revoked the university’s provisional licence which had been in operation since 1998 and recalled more than 1,000 students.
The university was also accused of recruiting unqualified academic staff and accumulating debts contrary to the Universities and Other Tertiary Institutions Act.