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Emphasis of Values over Virtue eroding Ethics and Integrity in Governance

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According to a 2 year Sida-funded research project in the Department of Philosophy and Development Studies, School of Liberal and Performing Arts, College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHUSS), the shift in societal emphasis of values over virtue knowledge has greatly contributed to the erosion of ethics and integrity in Governance.

Just as was the case in the Western world when organizations took over livelihood roles that were hitherto subject to households, accordingly, the ethical baton shifted from normative ethics to institutionalized ethics. Whereas in the former case a self-catering household was solely responsible for providing their own services, in the latter, government-run corporations had the responsibility to provide and account for services delivered, hence the ethical shift.

This trend was disclosed at an evaluation workshop hosted by Department of Philosophy and Development studies on Friday 21st June 2013 for select staff members and students of Makerere University to share findings on the research project and their implications to sustainable livelihoods. The Project titled Ethics and Integrity in Governance for Sustainable Livelihood was conducted in the four Districts of Gulu, Mbale, Masaka and Mbarara to establish what went wrong and at what point did things go wrong. This, it was hoped, would help to pinpoint the source of the today’s grave moral and ethical decay as constantly covered by the News media.

In opening the workshop, Prof. George Nasinyama, Deputy Director Research, Directorate of Research and Graduate Training (DRGT) commended the Department for delivering their findings within the stipulated project time. He further thanked the Swedish Government through Sida for immensely contributing to building Makerere’s research capacity by training over 250 PhDs since 2001.

Prof. Wamala Edward, the Head, Department of Philosophy and Development Studies in giving an introduction about the research noted that the project was guided by the adage that those who didn’t know their history were bound to repeat it. He decried the rise of anonymity and individualism among today’s generations that has led to the collapse of the Social Capital and provided a fertile breeding ground for Individual Narcissism. “It has become so desperate that ethical behavior is being taught as propositional knowledge, the same way you would teach Calculus [in Mathematics],”  lamented Prof. Wamala.

He further noted that the rise of modern lifestyles had slowly and steadily dissolved traditional ethics and as a result the pervading moral impropriety can no longer be seen for what it truly is; either by its perpetrators or society. Taking an example from Buganda, Prof. Wamala further traced this trend even by the shift in traditional proverbs from Ekyalo ddiba lya mbogo: terizingibwa bwomu (Societal roles can best be achieved through mutual cooperation) to Zirindaba olwange: Tawa musibe mmere (I will face my fate individually). He emphasized the need to create a generation of Rational Agents, who in the practice and fulfillment of national and societal duty, will not regard what the future holds for them as individuals, but will do so for the sake of posterity and permanent good.

In presenting a summary of the findings Dr. Lajul Wilfred, the Sida Project Coordinator-Department of Philosophy and Development Studies, noted a few relationships that had been established as a result of the research;

•    Where corruption is higher, human living standard is lower and where corruption is lower, human living standard is higher.
•    Where ethics and integrity is practiced, the social services rendered to the people are better, and where ethics and integrity is not practiced, social services rendered to the population are poorer
•    Ultimately, people are poor not because of lack of resources, but to a greater extent because of mismanagement of resources.

In his presentation on the Integrity and Livelihood aspect, Dr. Kasozi Ferdinald Mutawe, a lead researcher on the project noted that marginalization by gender in the access to land was a major impediment to the promotion of social livelihood. With regard to integrity in institutions, the research discovered that the appointment and recruitment process was marred by corruption in all four regions sampled.

Dr. Kasozi further noted that as societal values were constantly subject to change, there was a need to emphasize the more intransient human virtues in moral education. This was clearly evidenced by the fact that the issues of integrity affecting the Public institutions were the same ones also affecting Private Institutions. As such there is great need strengthen the teaching of curricula to emphasize forms of learning over forms of reading, the latter being used solely for the purposes of passing exams.

In closing the Workshop Assoc. Prof. A.B. Rukooko, the Dean, School of Liberal and Performing Arts, CHUSS commended the Department of Philosophy and Development Studies for coming up with relationships between ethics, integrity and sustainable livelihood that would help inform policy and guide public debate. He urged the research team to expand the discussion on findings to wider audiences so as to generate more interest in the area of ethics and integrity in governance in Uganda. “All of you present here today are potential experts on Ethics and Integrity in Uganda,” said Assoc. Prof. Rukooko. “I urge you to delve further in this debate and publish more papers so as to help the world answer the question, What is wrong with Uganda,” he concluded.

 

Publications from the Research

Lajul W., “Ethics in Public Administration in Uganda; where is the challenge?” in Public Administration in Uganda: Theory and Practice, LAP Lambert Academic Pubilcation, Saarbruken, Germany, 2012, pp.266-292.

Lajul W., “Impact of African traditional ethics on behavior in Uganda” in Mawazo: The Journal of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Makerere University, Vol. 10, No. 3 September 2011, pp. 125-139

Lajul W., “Global economic philosophy and challenges to African development” – in Mawazo: The Journal of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Makerere University, Vol. 10, No. 1 February 2011, pp. 1-9.

Lajul W., “The Right to Fod in Northern Uganda: Realities in Conflict Prone Areas”, in African Journal of Ethics and Human Rights: The Right to Adequate Food, Vol. 2, Law Africa Nairobi, 2010, pp. 335-370

Wamala Edward, “Building an Ethical Public Service for Improved Service” in Philosophia Africana, Vol. 13, No. 2, Fall 2010, Spring 2011

Wamala Edward, “From socialism to Structural Adjustments: African Philosophical Discourses in the Age of Uncertainty” in Philosophia Africana, Vol. 14, No. 2, Dec 2012.

Kasozi F.M., (2011) “Introduction to an African Philosoph – The Ntu’ology of the Baganda”, Verlag Karl Alber, Freiburg, Germany

Papers presented at conferences and seminars

Lajul W., Management of African knowledge system and the future of Africa in the world, presented on World’s Philosophy Day Workshop, 15th November, 2012, Makerere University

Lajul W., African ethics in the emerging new world order, presented during an International Seminar, 20th November, 2012, Makerere University

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Advert: Mature Age Entry Scheme – Private Sponsorship 2024/2025

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Students sit for an exam in the pre-COVID era, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda.

The Academic Registrar, Makerere University invites applications for the Undergraduate
Programmes under the Mature Age Entry Scheme only for Private Sponsorship for
2024/2025 Academic Year.
Non-Refundable Application fee of Shs. 50,000/= for Ugandans OR $75 Equivalent for
Internationals, plus bank charge should be paid in any of the banks used by Uganda
Revenye Authority after generating a Payment Reference Number (PRN).

  • Apply using the Institution’s Applications Portal URL:https: //apply.mak.ac.ug
  • Application is for candidates who passed the Mature Age Entry Examinations of December 17, 2022 and February 24, 2024 only.
  • Any candidate who passed the examinations in mentioned above and was not admitted on Government/ Private sponsorship for December 17, 2022 sitting, and for Government sponsorship for February 24, 2024 sitting, is eligible to apply for admission on Private Sponsorship for 2024 /2025 Academic Year.

The closing date for applying will be Friday 26th July, 2024.

Further details can be accessed by following this link.

Prof. Mukadasi Buyinza
ACADEMIC REGISTRAR

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Diploma/Degree Holders Admission Lists 2024/25

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Main Library, Makerere University. Photo taken on 29th February 2016.

The Office of Academic Registrar, Makerere University has released lists of Diploma/Degree Holder applicants admitted under Private/Self Sponsorship for the academic year 2024/25. Please note that admission is subject to verification of academic documents by the awarding institutions.

The admission list is displayed here below:

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African Futures Research Leadership Program: Cohort 5 – Call for Scholars

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Participants at the initial AAP convening participate in design-thinking exercises to help imagine the future of partnerships between MSU and Africa. Photo: AAP

The Alliance for African Partnership (AAP) is seeking applicants for the fifth cohort of the AAP African Futures Research Leadership Program. This competitive visiting scholar program supports early career researchers from the AAP consortium to work for one year under the mentorship of faculty members from MSU and their home institution, focusing on building skills in research for impact, writing scholarly and/or policy publications, disseminating of research results, and developing grant proposals for external support. Scholars will also participate in a structured professional development program while building bridges and lasting connections with MSU contacts and across their cohort. 

The main objective of the African Futures program is to strengthen the capacity of a cadre of African researchers to return to their home institutions and become scientific leaders in their community, establish long-term partnerships with MSU faculty, co-create innovative solutions to Africa’s challenges, and in turn become trainers of the next generation of researchers. This program aims to address the gender gap in Africa, where only 30% of researchers are women, so scholars selected for the program will be women, or men who can demonstrate they are committed to support efforts towards gender equity in higher education institutions in Africa. The research areas that the scholars will engage in during the program should be aligned to AAP’s research priority areas

The AAP Management Team requests applications from early career researchers to participate in the next cohort, with work to begin virtually in February 2025. Scholars will spend September – December 2025 at MSU for the in-person portion of the program, followed by another period of virtual collaboration, ending in early 2026. The scholar and mentor team will receive a small grant for research and professional development activities including conference attendance and publication. Scholars will also receive a stipend during their time at MSU, visa application support, and round-trip travel from their home institution.

Eligibility

  • Citizen of an African country 
  • Completion of a PhD degree within the last 10 years 
  • Employed as an Academic Staff member at one of the AAP African consortium universities including Egerton University, Makerere University, University of Dar es Salaam, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Botswana, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, University Cheikh Anta Diop, University of Arts and Humanities, Bamako, United States International University-Africa, and University of Pretoria 
  • Have documented approval of leave or sabbatical to participate in the program for the in-person period 
  • Have a mentor at their home institution that will serve as a collaborator and mentor
  • Research must be in one of the AAP priority areas
  • Applicants may only submit one proposal to AAP in this round of funding. Prior scholars are not eligible to apply. 

To learn more about the program, including how to apply, click below

Learn more

Applications to be an African Futures scholar are due August 18, 2024

Additional program dates:

  • Program start date (virtual): February 2025
  • In-person program: Sept – Dec 2025
  • Program end date: February 2026

Please contact Jose Jackson-Malete at jacks184@msu.edu or +1 517-353-6989 with any questions.

Source: AAP

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