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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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Uganda’s policymakers implored to address forest loss, plastic & water pollution

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Left to Right: Prof. Gunnar Köhlin, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, Amb. Maria Håkansson, Commissioner Julius Mafumbo and Prof. Edward Bbaale posing for a group photo before the opening ceremony on 22nd September 2022: Photo by EfD-Mak Centre.

The Vice Chancellor Professor Barnabas Nawangwe on Thursday 22nd September, 2022 participated in the opening of the EfD Annual meeting hosted by Makerere University at Speke Resort Munyonyo where he appealed to government to implement the ban on kaveera and address other environmental issues.

The opening ceremony moderated by the EfD Global Hub Manager Gunnar Köhlin and was graced by Uganda’s Minister for Water and Environment represented by the Commissioner for Water, Mr. Julius Mafumbo and the Swedish Ambassador to Uganda, H.E. Maria Håkansson.

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Prof. Nawangwe urges Makerere University community to support the Mastercard Foundation E-learning Initiative

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By Bernard Buteera

Makerere University has launched a two million dollar E-learning Project, dubbed The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program E-learning initiative.  

The launch was held on Tuesday 20th September 2022 at Makerere University, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium. It attracted over 200 participants, who included members of University Management, College Principals, School Deans, Academic and Administrative staff, students and the general university community.

While addressing the gathering, the Chief Guest, Prof. Mary Okwakol, the Executive Director of National Council for Higher Education (NCHE), congratulated Makerere University for winning such a huge grant, which will go a long way in transforming the eLearning infrastructure at Makerere University.

“I am happy to be joining you in launching a project that is at the heart of National Council for Higher Education. Online learning is at the heart of the Council, not only because of the challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic, but also the world is now a digital world.” Prof. Okwakol remarked.

Prof. Okwakol thanked Mastercard Foundation and other development partners who have continued to support initiatives that help transform higher institutions of learning in Uganda.

“I sincerely thank the Mastercard Foundation and other partners who have continued to support higher education in Uganda, especially in the area of research and online learning. Globally, the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, greatly disrupted education systems forcing learners and some schools to shift to virtual learning to curb the spread of the pandemic.” Prof. Okwakol pointed out.

On his part, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe urged the university community, especially the academic staff to take advantage of the Mastercard Foundation E-learning initiative to develop e-content across all Colleges of the University, to enhance capacity for eLearning at Makerere University.

[L -R] Chairperson of the Steering Committee of the E-learning Initiative, Prof. Umar Kakumba, Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, Prof. Mary Okwakol, the Executive Director of National Council for Higher Education (NCHE), Prof. Paul Birevu Muyinda, the Coordinator of the Mastercard Foundation E-learning Initiative and Prof. Justine Namaalwa, the Program Coordinator for Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program.

”I appeal to the Colleges to embrace this project and have as many courses adopt this pedagogy development system, even though students will continue with face-to face and phyisical learning, they should be allowed the option of online learning. The platforms that are going to be built, will give our students an opportunity to interact with international students, scholars, teachers and with each other.” Prof. Nawangwe applealed.

The Vice Chancellor, further called upon all other development partners to emulate Mastercard Foundation in supporting Makerere University and other universities on the entire African continent in strengthening digital literacy, so that Africa is not left behind.

”In 2018 I attended a conference on E-learning in Beijing China, where a critical question was asked; Will Africa be left behind again? This was in reference to many advancements that were taking place in the western world, in which Africa had been left behind.” The Vice Chancellor reminded the audience.

Prof. Nawangwe further emphaised the importance of e-learning as one of the critical modes of teaching and learning in the 21st first century.   

”Ladies and Gentlemen, I cannot over emphasise the importance we attach to e-learning the 21st Century, that is why we took a decision to elevate the Department of Open and Distance Learning into an Institute of Open and Distance E-learning with an intention of having e-learning extended to other Colleges of the university.” Prof. Nawangwe pointed out.

The Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic Affairs, and Chairperson of the Steering Committee of the E-learning Initiative, Prof. Umar Kakumba, rallied the University community to support the implementation of the project in the University.

“The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program E-learning initiative could not have come in at a better time than post COVID19 era. A pandemic, which exposed our systems and methods of teaching and learning. You all recall, when were hit by the pandemic, with lockdowns and closures of institutions of learning, we all went into a panicky mode on how were going to cope with online learning. I therefore call upon every member of the university to give this project the support it deserves.

Prof. Kakumba reminded the audience the importance and relevancy of online learning at Makerere University and other universities in Uganda.

“The online method of learning is best suited for everyone. This digital revolution has led to remarkable changes in how the content is accessed, consumed, discussed, and shared. Office goers and stay home mothers can take up online educational courses too, at the time that suits them. Depending on their availability and comfort, many people choose to learn at weekends or evenings.” Prof. Kakumba remarked.

Prof. Paul Birevu Muyinda, the Coordinator of the Mastercard Foundation E-learning Initiative, informed the audience the importance of the project and the expected outcomes for the University.

One of the Champions of e-learning trained by Arizona State University, Prof. Paul Birevu Muyinda receiving a certificate from Chief Guest.

“The Mastercard Foundation e- Learning Initiative is a Project funded by Mastercard Foundation aimed at addressing the negative impact of COVID-19 pandemic that constrained access and continuity of teaching, learning, research and community engagement activities at Makerere University” Prof. Muyinda pointed out.

Prof. Muyinda further thanked the team that he worked with in putting up the proposal in a very short time that yielded such an important grant for the University.

“I thank the team that spent sleepless nights putting together the proposal that resulted into this project. I must report that Makerere University is privileged to be having the most highly qualified persons in online instruction design and online pedagogy at the IODeL and beyond. It is now up to Makerere University in particular and the Country in general to make use of these persons to transform the terrain of online, blended distance and e-learning education.” Prof. Muyinda remarked.

Prof. Justine Namaalwa, the Program Coordinator for Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program at Makerere University, informed the audience, that the E-learning initiative was one of the many partnerships between Mastercard Foundation and Makerere University geared at supporting the young people to succeed on the African continent.

Members of University Management, staff and students present.

“The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program continues to recognize that in order to enable young people across Africa to succeed, there is need to; Address systemic barriers in Higher education, Strengthen the capacity of Institutions that serve the Young People, and Support innovative solutions across critical sectors.” Prof. Namaalwa remarked.

The colourful launch ended with a panel discussion in which panelists digested the importance and opportunities for open distance and eLearning in higher institutions of learning.

Bernard Buteera is the Communications Officer of the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program at Makerere University.

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Supplementary Admissions to Bachelor of Laws Under Private Sponsorship 2022/23

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Mak-Undergraduate-Admissions-2021-2022

The Academic Registrar, Makerere University, informs applicants wishing to be admitted to Bachelor of Laws Private for 2022/2023 Academic year but failed to submit their application online to submit their applications from Friday 23rd to Friday 30th September, 2022 at a non-refundable fee of 50,000/= (Fifty thousand shillings only).

The applicants MUST have passed the Pre-entry Examinations for Bachelor of Laws.

Diploma/Degree holders should submit certified copies of their academic transcript to Room
315 Level 3, Senate Building.

Applicants who have already been admitted need not apply.

For any additional information, contact Undergraduate Admissions Offices 301/303 for A’Level Applicants and Office 315 for Diploma/Degree holders.

ALFRED MASIKYE NAMOAH
AG. ACADEMIC REGISTRAR
Date: 22nd September, 2022

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