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East Africa to Explore Business Opportunities from Climate Change

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Over 100 participants at the 1st Climate Change and Opportunities for Sustainable Business in East Africa Conference have developed a Communiqué that will be presented at the upcoming United Nations Climate Conference (COP21) in December 2015 in Paris, France.

The Minister of Water and Environment, Hon. Ephraim Kamuntu who is scheduled to lead the Ugandan delegation to the 2015 Climate Change Conference (COP21), officially opened the Kampala Conference held on 12th November 2015 on the theme: Supporting the 2015 Paris Climate Change Conference: Climate Change and Opportunities for Sustainable Business in East Africa.

Minister of Water and Environment, Hon. Ephraim Kamuntu addressing participants.Hon. Kamuntu commended the Royal Embassy of Norway, Makerere University-Uganda, and University of Bergen-Norway, for organizing the conference aimed at exploring and demonstrating through workable models/approaches that sustainable solutions and technology can be enhanced to create business opportunities for the mutual benefits.

 “This Conference is timely; for it presents the East Africans with a platform to discuss and come up with a message on climate change and business opportunities that we would like to be captured by over 190 countries in COP21 in 2015. This is a commendable consultative and participatory approach, and I thank the Embassy of Norway, the University of Bergen in Norway, and Makerere University, Kampala for organizing this important conference,” the Minister said.

In the communiqué, the participants comprising government officials, delegation from East Africa and Norway, members of the private sector, development partners and key industry figures, the academia and media recommended to the United Nations Conference of the Parties Conference (COP21) the following:

  • The prioritization and mainstreaming of South-North collaborations especially in the areas of research and innovation that are key to attaining climate-friendly development and eventually developing sustainable business enterprises into national policy frameworks.
  • Based on the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities, the urgent streamlining of climate financing initiatives including but not limited to carbon markets to enable up-scaling of existing technologies on a massive scale such as the use of solar energy, wind and thermal resources as well as energy saving clean cooking technologies.
  • That the Academia, Private Sector and Government form a strong alliance that commercializes research findings, technology and technology transfer as well as innovative approaches towards climate-smart business opportunities at all levels. 
  • That Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Faith-based organizations, the private sector and the media embrace networking as a mutually beneficial avenue for sharing and disseminating business programs supported by national and regional policy frameworks as well as build capacity of stakeholders to implement viable climate change and business linkages.Some of the participants who attended the Conference.

Addressing the participants at Serena Hotel Kampala, Hon. Kamuntu said that the effects of climate change in Uganda are already evident in the agricultural sector; affecting the productivity of seasons which have culminated in adverse effects in combination with increasing population growth rate. 

“Uganda’s current growth rate indicates that 60% of the population consists of young people below 18 years and 78% of the population is the youth under 35 years. With this kind of population, it will be a wise opportunity and blessing for the country to invest in and develop skills of these young people in order to have a dynamic labor force for Uganda’s economy. However we must recognize that if this is not handled, the combination of climate change with the increasing population can be a disaster,” he stated.

The Norwegian Ambassador to Uganda H.E Susan Eckey said for the world to be able to find solutions to climate change, countries should develop a system for national reporting. Norwegian Ambassador to Uganda H.E Susan Eckey, giving her speech.

“In the climate meeting in Lima last year, countries agreed to not only set national goals before the Paris conference but also to enhance necessary action, and we see that countries are willing to do more than before. More than 150 countries responsible for 90% of gas emissions have already set their climate goals. These goals show that the transition to the low emission societies has begun,”she said.

Her Excellency informed the participants that Norway has set three top priorities ahead of the upcoming Paris conference. These include: a long term vision; countries to update and upgrade their climate goals every five years; and a system for national reporting. 

  Prof. Dag Rune Olsen, University of Bergen- Norway.Highlighting the issue of temperature change and its adverse impact on human and natural systems, the Rector of University of Bergen, Prof. Dag Rune Olsen said that by the end of this year 2015, the global average temperature may have a positive milestone of about 1 degree Centigrade above industrial levels as predicted by the UK Meteorological Office.

 “This climate change has wide spread impact on humans and natural systems. The increase in temperature will also have widespread impact on bio-diversity, food security as well as affect public health. We shall also witness the increase to geo-hazards. The human influence on the climate system is clear and the recent emissions of greenhouse gasses are the highest in history, that leads us to the reasons as to why the upcoming meeting-the COP21 in Paris is important,” he explained.

Prof. Olsen revealed that the Africa Progress Report shows that Africa can seize climate and all energy opportunities. The new research on the climate economy shared by Lord Stern also illustrates the opportunity to transform and expand the supply of hydroelectric solar Power energy in Africa, which will spur development and reduce on the negative environment effects.

According to the Makerere University Vice Chancellor Prof. John Ddumba-Ssentamu, global attention today is focused on climate change as a criticalProf. John Ddumba-Ssentam, Vice Chancellor-Makerere University. driver for development. Prof. Ddumba-Ssentamu mentioned that East Africa and Norway have initiated several joint efforts to address the impacts of climate change while harnessing business opportunities.

 “The effects of climate change already have profound and irreversible impact on economic social and environmental systems. They are manifested in several forms including drought, erratic rainfall patterns and other extreme weather events that threatens human health and infrastructure, agricultural production and food security, water and other natural resources and sustainability that are the very core of human survival and economic development. It is therefore very urgent that we come up with both mitigation and adaptation majors that will help us to deal with the evolving climate,” he remarked.

During the conference, participants also discussed the effects of climate change on trade and business, social economic opportunities and development, human health, environment and continental prosperity. Through the various discussions and presentations held, the participants indicated that the high prevalence of food shortages faced by East African countries is caused by the high illiteracy rate and unawareness, marketing bottlenecks, poor agricultural practice, resource depletion and degradation.

Giving the East African perspective on mitigation and adaptation strategies carried out by Makerere University so far, Prof. Samuel Kyamanywa noted that the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) has integrated aspects of climate change at undergraduate level and introduced new regional Masters programmes. He also shared that the College has developed seeds for rangeland forages, drought and disease resistant varieties of crops as well as carried out extensive research on indigenous multipurpose tree species that can absorb carbon dioxide from the environment.

Prof. Samuel Kyamanywa presenting the East African perspective on Climate Change.In a presentation titled, Converting the Climate Change message into suitable business, Mr. Ssewagudde  Christopher, Representative from Innovation Norway said: “The emerging opportunities for alternative livelihoods, asset building, improving scientific knowledge for value addition projects, up-scaling, replication and sustainability, institution of linkages and the importance of participatory approaches and addressing cross-cutting issues in business like mainstreaming gender, indigenous knowledge, HIV/AIDS, child protection and disability have changed the standards of living as well as creating more business opportunities for East African people.”

The participants recognized that sustainable solutions and technology can be harnessed to create business opportunities for the mutual benefit of East Africa and Norway in line with international targets including the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

They also appreciated the support provided by the United Nations through Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Conference of the Parties towards an international agreement of dealing with the Climate Change adaptation and Mitigation.

During the conference, the Minister of Water and Environment Hon. Ephraim Kamuntu, H.E. Susan Eckey and Prof. John Ddumba-Ssentamu were presented with signed copies of a book entitled Responsible and Profitable: Strategies for Sustainable business models by Authors Sveinung Jørgensen and Lars Jacob Tynes Pedersen. The book connects Business with Climate Change and provides knowledge on how countries can utilize opportunities availed by the current climate change.

Article by: Mak Public Relations Office

 

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Short Course Announcement: Fundamentals of Teaching and Learning

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The Lead Facilitator, Dr. Roy William Mayega (Left) takes participants through Instructional Design (ID) Training held from 29th January to 2nd February 2018. RAN Innovation Lab, ResilientAfrica Network (RAN), School of Public Health Annex, College of Health Sciences (CHS), Plot 28, House 30, Upper Kololo Terrace, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.

Many faculty members in Higher Education Institutions do not get pre-service training in teaching and learning before they start teaching. This means that they have to learn the ‘hard way’ on the job, and this often affects the quality of delivery. The Office of the Dean, Makerere University School of Public Health (MakSPH), in collaboration with the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, MakSPH, ResilientAfrica Network (RAN) and Institute of Open Distance and eLearning – Makerere University hereby announce the 2024 edition of the course titled: Fundamentals of Teaching and Learning. The course will run from Monday 29th July to Friday 2nd August 2024, only in the morning hours (08.00am – 11.30 am). The course will be delivered in dual mode: Both online (through the zoom platform) and face-to-face (at the RAN Lower Lab, MakSPH Annex in Kololo). The course is open to both junior and senior faculty members, research fellows, honorary lecturers and academic program administrators from Makerere University and other Universities wishing to enhance their teaching skills, with a view to improving teaching and learning.

Applying

Interested applicants are requested to send a short expression of interest that includes their designation, by email, to: Mr. Ivan Mutyaba, Administrator, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, using the following email address: imutyaba@musph.ac.ug. Admission will be on a first-come-first-served basis. Applicants should be ready to take off 5 mornings of intense work during the week indicated. Come and discover the frontiers of teaching and learning.

The Course Team

Course Lead: Dr. Roy William Mayega (MBChB, MPH, PhD), Senior Lecturer, Instructional Materials Designer/Editor, MPH DE Program, MakSPH; Lead the co-creation of instructional materials for the inaugural MPH DE Program

Course Facilitators

  1. Dr. Roy Gonzaga Mubuuke (PhD), Breast Radiology Specialist/Medical Education Consultant/Member HEPI Project Team
  2. Dr. Rovincer Najjuma (PhD), Senior Lecturer/Curriculum Specialist, College of Education and External Studies, Makerere University
  3. Dr. Suzanne Kiwanuka (PhD), Senior Lecturer/Chair Department of Health Policy, Planning & Management, MakSPH, College of Health Sciences, Makerere University
  4. Dr. Barbara Kirunda (PhD), Lecturer, Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics, MakSPH, MakCHS, Field Coordinator, MPHDE Program
  5. Mr. Jude Oboth, IT Specialist, MakSPH; 12 years of professional experience managing large organizational computer networks
  6. Prof. Pauline Byakika (PhD), Professor of Medicine, Chair Department of Internal Medicine, MakSoM, MakCHS, Head, Mentorship Program MakCHS
  7. Dr. John Bosco Isunju (PhD), Lecturer, Department of Disease Control and Environmental Health, MakSPH, MakCHS; Head, COVID Task force on alternative assessment, MakSPH

Support Team

  • Ivan Mutyaba, Administrator, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics – Admin Support
  • Harriet Adong, Communications Specialist, ResilientAfrica Network and MakRIF – Course Communications lead
  • Wilson Abigaba, IT Specialist RAN and MakRIF – Course IT Support
  • Debbie Namirembe, Senior Administrator, RAN – Admin Support

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Mary Stuart Hall Rehabilitation Commences as VC Hands over Site to NEC

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The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (Centre) hands over a file to NEC Managing Director and CEO, Lieutenant General James Mugira (Left) as Ag. DVCFA, Prof. Henry Alinaitwe (Right) witnesses on 31st May 2024. Site Handover for the proposed rehabilitation of Mary Stuart Hall, Mary Stuart Road, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.

The proposed rehabilitation of Mary Stuart Hall commenced on Friday 31st May 2024 with the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe handing over the site to the contractor National Enterprise Corporation (NEC) represented by Managing Director and CEO, Lieutenant General James Mugira. The first and largest female Hall of residence, Mary Stuart was completed in 1953 and named after wife to Bishop Simon Cyril Edgar Stuart, the Third Bishop of the Diocese of Uganda from 1932-1952. Mary Stuart worked hard for the betterment of women education during her time in Uganda.

Mary Stuart becomes the second student residence to undergo rehabilitation following the handover of Lumumba Hall to NEC on 27th June 2023. Both projects are fully funded by the Government of Uganda. And whereas Lumumba’s works cost UGX9billion, Mary Stuart’s will cost UGX10.5billion, and cover roof repairs, plumbing and electrical systems and installations overhaul, as well as external aesthetic works.

In his remarks, the Vice Chancellor thanked the President, H.E. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and Government of Uganda for ensuring that funds for the long-awaited rehabilitation of student halls of residence are availed. In the same breath, he thanked the First Lady and Minister of Education and Sports Hon. Janet Museveni for not only inspecting the state of the halls on 19th January 2021 but also ensuring that funding for the halls rehabilitation project is prioritized.

Prof. Nawangwe commended NEC on being a professional contractor, noting that all matters arising out of previous projects had been handled within original budgets and time-frames.

Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (Left) and Lt. Gen. James Mugira (2nd Right) receive a guided tour of the Mary Stuart Hall site from Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli (Right), Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera (2nd Left) and other officials. Site Handover for the proposed rehabilitation of Mary Stuart Hall, Mary Stuart Road, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (Left) and Lt. Gen. James Mugira (2nd Right) receive a guided tour of the Mary Stuart Hall site from Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli (Right), Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera (2nd Left) and other officials.

“Now that we are in a girls’ hall, every detail matters. We must make this hall look like one that is going to house the future mothers and leaders of this nation so that when they leave, they feel that they have attended a leading university in the world” the Vice Chancellor advised NEC.

Prof. Nawangwe equally urged the Project Consultants led by Dr. Kenneth Ssemwogere, Senior Lecturer, Department of Architecture and Physical Planning, College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT) to work with the contractor on ensuring that the project works and aesthetics give the hall a fresh new look.

On behalf of NEC, Lt. Gen. James Mugira thanked the Vice Chancellor and leadership of Makerere University for the trust and confidence shown in the Corporation’s capabilities, adding that he was happy as an alumnus of the School of Law to be back to contribute the development of his Alma mater. “This is the third project we are undertaking as the National Enterprise Corporation; we started with the perimeter wall, and we are now at Lumumba Hall where works are at 80-85% completion.”

Lt. Gen. Mugira therefore reassured the Management that NEC would do quality work and try as much as possible to complete the project in time, at a relatively lower cost than other contractors. “With NEC, we bring on board military discipline and we don’t have red tape or bureaucracies; once a decision has been taken, it has been taken” he clarified.

“I want to thank the Vice Chancellor for believing in and promoting local content, because NEC is a local company. With NEC engaging in such a project, we are first of all giving jobs to our young people, we are skilling them, we are saving foreign exchange that would otherwise be repatriated and as a country, we are building capacity” Lt. Gen. Mugira summed up.

Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (3rd Left) and Lt. Gen. James Mugira (4th Left) pose for a group photo with Left to Right: Ms. Ritah Namisango, Eng. Brian Buhanda, Mr. Yusuf Kiranda, Ms. Mary Gloria Nakajubi, Prof. Henry Alinaitwe, Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera, Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli, Mr. Rodney Rugyema and Ms. Norah Nalubowa. Site Handover for the proposed rehabilitation of Mary Stuart Hall, Mary Stuart Road, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (3rd Left) and Lt. Gen. James Mugira (4th Left) pose for a group photo with Left to Right: Ms. Ritah Namisango, Eng. Brian Buhanda, Mr. Yusuf Kiranda, Ms. Mary Gloria Nakajubi, Prof. Henry Alinaitwe, Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera, Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli, Mr. Rodney Rugyema and Ms. Norah Nalubowa.

The Acting Deputy Vice Chancellor (Finance and Administration), Prof. Henry Alinaitwe expressed happiness that the second phase of rehabilitation of halls of residence was finally taking off under the NEC, a contractor that had done quality work on other projects such as the new Kiira Motors Corporation (KMC) plant in Jinja.

He noted that the project will provide good grounds for hands-on industrial training for students of quantity surveying, architecture, civil engineering, and other disciplines. Prof. Alinaitwe further observed that the project accords staff the opportunity to not only improve their professional profiles but also practice as consultants within the university premises, “and so we thank the Vice Chancellor for availing us these opportunities.”

The University Secretary and former Guild President, Mr. Yusuf Kiranda shared that the University Leadership looks forward to the rehabilitation works being expedited. “The current student leaders have challenged us that they would like to be around for the commissioning of the finished product and so I hope that we can finish these works and give them an opportunity to account to their electorate.

Prior to the handover ceremony, the parties were taken on a guided tour of the site by the Director, Estates and Works Department, Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera, Dean of Students, Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli, Warden Mary Stuart Hall, Ms. Norah Nalubowa and a host of other officials accompanied by the Chairlady Mary Stuart Hall, Ms. Mary Gloria Nakajubi.

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Prof. Hisali, Prof. Yawe handover office to Prof. Bbaale, Prof. Wokadala

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In a vibrant ceremony brimming with nostalgia and optimism, College of Business and Management Sciences-Makerere University (CoBAMS) celebrated the transition of leadership from the accomplished hands of Prof. Eria Hisali and Prof. Bruno L. Yawe to the promising stewardship of Prof. Edward Bbaale and Prof. James Wokadala on Friday 31st May 2024.

The event, attended by esteemed members of the university community, including representatives from the Vice Chancellor’s office and members of the Central Management Team, was a testament to the collaborative spirit and dedication that have come to define CoBAMS. The outgoing Principal, Prof. Eria Hisali, and Deputy Principal, Prof. Bruno Yawe, were lauded for their eight years of service, during which they significantly advanced the college’s academic and infrastructural capabilities.

A Legacy of Excellence

Prof. Hisali’s farewell address highlighted the numerous achievements under his leadership. He proudly noted the establishment of strategic partnerships and collaborations that have greatly benefited the college. “Our MoU with Stellenbosch University provided full PhD scholarships for four Academic Staff Members, while our partnership with Wageningen University in the Netherlands supported PhD training for two Staff Members. Additionally, the Republic of Korea’s embassy in Uganda granted three PhD scholarships,” he remarked.

Assoc Prof. Bruno Yawe (Left) handing over to incoming Deputy Principal Dr. James Wokadala.

These collaborations extended to notable institutions such as ACCA, Prudential Uganda, Addis Ababa University, The University of Rwanda, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, and the University of Dar es Salaam, reflecting CoBAMS’ commitment to internationalization and academic excellence. Prof. Hisali also mentioned the development of a Quality Assurance Framework and significant infrastructural proposals, including a new block pending government funding.

The outgoing Principal shared impressive statistics: a fivefold increase in publications from 30 in 2017 to 150 in 2023, expansion of wireless internet coverage to over 90% of the college, and a significant rise in PhD holders among the academic staff to 60%.

Prof. Yawe appreciated all the academic, administrative and support staff that supported his leadership throughout the 8 years of service.

Looking Ahead

Prof. Edward Bbaale, the incoming Principal, expressed his vision to elevate CoBAMS as a global leader in innovative teaching, research, and policy engagement. With over two decades at CoBAMS, including eight years as Dean of the School of Economics, he emphasized his commitment to continuing the progress made by his predecessors. He pledged to prioritize graduate training, faculty research, and the commercialization of innovations, alongside strategic financial initiatives such as the College Endowment Fund.

Prof. Eria Hisali receiving a token of appreciation from memebers of the Administrative Staff at MakCoBAMS.

Prof. James Wokadala, the new Deputy Principal, acknowledged the substantial achievements of the outgoing leaders and outlined his plans to build on their legacy. He aims to foster a supportive and engaging environment by establishing a gym for staff and creating a Savings and Credit Cooperative Organization (SACCO).

Heartfelt Farewells and New Beginnings

The ceremony featured heartfelt speeches from various stakeholders, celebrating the contributions of Prof. Hisali and Prof. Yawe. Dr. Susan Namirembe Kavuma, representing the academic staff, praised the outgoing leaders for their unwavering support and urged the new administration to continue fostering a conducive environment for teaching and learning. Ms. Caroline Nanono Jjingo, on behalf of the administrative staff, echoed these sentiments, appreciating the open and inspirational leadership style of Prof. Hisali and Prof. Yawe. “Throughout their tenure, they have resonated the words of Henry Ross Perot, who said that “Lead and inspire people. Don’t try to manage and manipulate people. Inventories can be managed but people must be led.”  She said.

Outgoing Principal Eria Hisali and outgoing Deputy Principal Bruno Yawe cut cake.

The Deputy University Secretary, Mr. Simon Kizito, provided sage advice to the incoming leaders, emphasizing the importance of openness to feedback, leading by example, and maintaining accountability. He reminded them that failure is an inevitable part of leadership and encouraged them to learn from it while prioritizing self-care.

On their part, the support staff appreciated the outgoing leadership for their open door policy and willingness to support all staff especially those experiencing life challenges. Quoting Ecclesiastes 3:1, Mr Joseph Ikarokot said there was a season for everything and staff were privileged to have worked with the duo.

A Promising Future

As the new leadership team embarks on their journey, they carry forward a legacy of excellence and a vision for a brighter future. With their extensive experience and commitment to innovation and collaboration, Prof. Bbaale and Prof. Wokadala are well-positioned to steer CoBAMS toward greater achievements and global recognition.

The ceremony concluded with a celebratory cake-cutting, gifts from the administrative staff, and a reaffirmation of the college’s enduring spirit of unity and progress. The new era at CoBAMS promises continued growth and success, building on the solid foundation laid by Prof. Hisali and Prof. Yawe.

Some of the staff memebers who were present at the handover ceremony.

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