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Mak Public Infrastructure Management Consortium Launched

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The College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS), Makerere University on Friday, 22nd June 2018 officially launched the Makerere Public Infrastructure Management (MPIM) Consortium at a function presided over by Ms. Christina Malmberg Calvo, the World Bank Country Manager, Uganda. MPIM is a professional entity that brings together a network of experts in the diverse areas of public infrastructure management with the objective of promoting sustainable infrastructure management. To help achieve this, MPIM will provide professional capacity, advisory services and best practices to public and private institutions involved in infrastructure projects and programmes in Uganda as well as elsewhere in Africa.

“Uganda has an ambitious development agenda of transforming itself into a modern and prosperous country by 2040. To achieve these targets, the Government has increased its capital investments significantly in the past decade to address the binding constraints to growth and job creation especially through infrastructure investments” remarked Ms. Malmberg.

She acknowledged that whereas this was a fine strategy, Uganda as a nation needed to improve its capacity to manage public infrastructure, especially the ability to assess and deliver projects on time and within budget. “There are projects that are completed at twice the original cost, in part, due to endemic delays in implementation, cost overruns and corruption” added Ms. Malmberg.

Ms. Christina Malmberg Calvo, the World Bank Country Manager, Uganda, presided over the launch

The Country Director therefore acknowledged the MPIM consortium launch as timely and a continuation of Makerere University’s leadership in building and strengthening institutional capacity to better manage public investments in Uganda. She however urged Makerere to work with the Government to attain faster execution of projects by building the capacities of ministries, department and agencies in project preparation, appraisal, approval and monitoring through the MPIM Consortium as a centre of excellence.

Ms. Malmberg also proposed that Makerere through the MPIM Consortium could help: strengthen the independent review of Government’s project proposals; document good practice operational procedures to ensure adaptive learning; monitor and evaluate all public capital investment projects under implementation; and support transparency especially during project appraisal.

Representing the Vice Chancellor Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Finance and Administration)-Prof. William Bazeyo thanked Ms. Christina Malmberg Calvo for accepting to preside over the event, noting that Makerere University and the World Bank have enjoyed cordial and mutually beneficial working relationship over several decades. He also appreciated members of the audience; most of whom were Makerere University Alumni, for continuing to support their alma mater by taking great interest in the consortium launch.

Prof. William Bazeyo represented the Vice Chancellor Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe at the launch

“Today marks an important day as we launch the Makerere Public Infrastructure Management Consortium. Makerere University through its remarkable Masters degree in Public Infrastructure Management supports a lot of infrastructural development in neighbouring countries by training managers from various sectors.

“I am therefore pleased that the consortium will be able to undertake research and development study initiatives in public infrastructure management with the aim of reducing the gap between knowledge acquisition and knowledge practice in infrastructure management” remarked the Deputy Vice Chancellor.

Prof. Bazeyo further commended the MPIM Patron and Dean, School of Business, Assoc. Prof. Umar Kakumba for being a great mobiliser, whose skills have greatly enhanced the Masters in Public Infrastructure Management’s growth and recognition.

“I thank the Pan-African Capacity Building Programme (PACBP), supported by the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA), the International Development Corporation (IDC) and the French Agency for Development (AFD) as well as all development partners that have supported the Masters in Public Infrastructure Management program since its inception in 2012” the Principal CoBAMS, Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali remarked. “These resources have been put to good use and the gathering today is one of the pieces of evidence that can attest to this” he added.

Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali makes his remarks at the MPIM Consortium launch

The Principal tasked the School of Business to work the MPIM alumni to incorporate a component on the role of communities in the management of infrastructural facilities. “We have already heard reports of vandalism of culverts and other road works along the recently completed Kampala-Entebbe Express Highway. This calls for a holistic approach to communication, especially in addition to the standard facilitation that accompanies infrastructure development” he shared.

Assoc. Prof. Hisali then paid tribute to the organising committee for the excellent work and preparations leading up to the successful consortium launch. “The MPIM Consortium will open a new door for understanding more cultures in the region and as a College we are committed to supporting all MPIM activities” he concluded.

Delivering the keynote address at the consortium launch, Assoc. Prof. Umar Kakumba noted that the huge investments in infrastructure projects and programmes to foster the development signified that resources were no longer the problem. “Today, the biggest obstacles are the leadership gap and professional managerial deficiency leading to loss and wastage of resources earmarked for development programs” he clarified.

Assoc. Prof. Umar Kakumba delivered the keynote address

He added that the Masters in Public Infrastructure Management was therefore developed to make Africa productive by reforming public service performance and building capacity of the African public service – through training and partnership. “The degree particularly focuses on enhancing managerial capacity in roads and transport management, water and sanitation, energy resources management, solid waste management, and health and education services” said Assoc. Prof. Kakumba.

In terms of impact to date, the program has registered and trained 152 students under MPIM, produced 92 graduates in four cohorts and received funding for 100 scholarships worth US$1Million. As a result, the program has trained senior managers from the; Uganda National Roads Authority-UNRA, Kampala Capital City Authority-KCCA, Ministry of Works and Transport-MoWT, Rwanda Development Board-RDB, Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority-RURA and Local Governments across East Africa.  

As he concluded his address, Assoc. Prof. Kakumba shared that the MPIM Consortium would offer its alumni a networking forum for continuous interaction to foster ideals of the PACBP. In particular, the consortium would offer the alumni a vehicle to establish partnerships with Government non-government agencies as well as international collaboration and linkages. It would further provide capacity building and home-grown solutions to local infrastructure challenges and help mobilise tuition scholarships to train more managers.

DBSA's Dr. Dumisani Magadlela made the presentation on PACBF support to development

Speaking on behalf of the partners, DBSA’s Programme Manager MPIM and Executive Coach-Dr. Dumisani Magadlela expressed his happiness at attending the launch, saying “in South Africa we hold Makerere University in high regard and thank you for leading. This programme is pioneering what we want to see in other regions and as such, we want to come in and support you strongly in technical terms” added Dr. Magadlela.

He also paid tribute to Assoc. Prof. Kakumba’s mobilisation skills, noting that he had helped the PACBP mobilise in South Africa for the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and in Senegal for the West African bloc. “Central Africa is also coming on board through the Omar Bongo University in Gabon and Dr. Kakumba is also helping to mobilise there.”

Dr. Magadlela further emphasised the PACBP’s keenness on achieving Sustainable Development Goal 4; Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all, acknowledging that “the MPIM consortium launch is working towards achieving this SDG.”

“We are right with you, holding your hands going forward. We are ready to come and work with you especially on the short courses. You have a friend in South Africa” reassured Dr. Magadlela.

L-R: AfDB's Mr. George Adongo Makajuma, EU Delegation's Mr. Pavlos Evangelidis and Assoc. Prof. Umar Kakumba during the panel discussion

In the discussions that followed the consortium launch, panelists who included the EU Delegation to Uganda’s Head of Economic Growth-Mr. Pavlos Evangelidis, African Development Bank (AfDB)’s Overseer of Infrastructure Development in East Africa-Mr. George Adongo Makajuma and Dr. Ibrahim Okumu-Senior Lecturer, CoBAMS, discussed various issues ranging from financing infrastructure to its impact on local communities and economic development.

Mr. Evangelidis noted that whereas all EU funded programmes in Uganda were aimed at fostering economic growth, development and economic prosperity are not mutually exclusive of environmental sustainability. Funding to the tune of 600Million Euros has largely been and still is directed at infrastructure development with the aim of maximizing the profitability of Uganda’s exports.

He reiterated that the EU’s funding model is based on non-reversible grants and focuses on achieving public good. He also clarified that all projects funded by the EU are on upon request by the Government. He gave an example of the proposed Kampala-Jinja Expressway, a vital link of the transport sector’s northern corridor.

Members of the MPIM Consortium Board of Directors pose for a group photo with the Chief Guest Ms. Christina Malmberg Cavlo. Left is the Board Patron-Assoc. Prof. Eng. Umaru Bagambadde

On the energy front, Mr. Evangelidis shared that the EU was working with Government to provide sustainable power in areas where it is currently unsustainable. This, he said, involves working with the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) to come up with mini-grids as a viable means of providing access to electricity.

In his contribution to the discussion, Mr. Makajuma shared that AfDB’s 10-year strategic plan is largely (up to 80%) made up of infrastructure as a means of unlocking export-led growth and trade: a strategy that minimizes social exclusion by bringing everybody into the national economy. He further shared AfDB’s focus is on promoting regional integrity that fosters inter-regional trade links. “Let’s do business with each other” he insisted.

On the financing front, Mr. Makajuma noted that debt servicing remains one of the biggest expenditures of developing economies. “The MPIM Consortium launch is long overdue as a means to help arrange and structure some of these deals on loans. We need assurance on the sustainability of money spent on infrastructure by examining the project lifecycle cost. For avoidance of rushed loans, contracts that are well structured should precede private sector involvement or consultation” he added.

L-R: Assoc. Prof. Eria Hisali, Prof. William Bazeyo, Ms. Christina Malmberg Calvo and Assoc. Prof. Umar Kakumba share a light moment during the presentations

He emphasised that the repayment period for infrastructure development loans should never be shorter than the lifecycle of investment, so as to prevent governments from being burdened by debt servicing before they accrue any returns on investment. “The efficiency game is the future of decision making and the MPIM Consortium exists to create that caliber of advisors. Today’s launch marks the start of a good journey and the African Development Bank is willing to support this initiative.”

Making his presentation on the “Voice of the Beneficiaries”, Dr. Okumu, quoting the World Bank Enterprise Survey 2013 (WBES 2013) shared that it takes 44 days to receive an electricity connection service, an economically unviable option for any business. He further cited interventions like the Isimba and Karuma hydroelectric projects, which despite being scheduled for completion in 2016 and 2017 respectively remained incomplete to date.

Dr. Ibrahim Okumu made a presentation on the "Voice of the Beneficiaries"

Dr. Okumu further decried the allocation of over 90% of road construction projects to foreign companies. “This has weakened the multiplier effect of huge government investment in infrastructure because after completion of the projects, very few of these skills have been passed on to the local communities.”

As a way forward, he called for further strengthening of capacity development in Public Infrastructure Management as well as the attachment of property of public officials under whose watch shoddy infrastructure development works occur, in addition to other punitive action. Lastly, he made a case for the urgent need to link skills development initiatives to infrastructural skill requirements.

The workshop also received presentations from the National Planning Authority (NPA)’s Resident Consultant-Mr. John Bosco Kintu Kavuma on the “Capacity for Project Implementation and Management of Infrastructure in the East African Region” as well as the Chairman, Board of Directors-Eng. Usama Kayima on the “Strategic Direction of the MPIM Consortium.”

Mr. John Bosco Kintu Kavuma made a presentation on the “Capacity for Project Implementation and Management of Infrastructure in the East African Region”

Please see Downloads for the presentations

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A Successful Ph.D. Defense by Vianney Andrew Yiga

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The CEDAT community is proud to share our congratulations to Vianney Andrew Yiga following his successful Ph.D. defense that happened yesterday Monday 3rd October 2022 at the College of Engineering, Design, Art, and Technology (CEDAT).

His Thesis was titled; Thermal Stability of Fiber- Reinforced Polylactic Acid Composites for Flameretarded Applications.

The candidate was supervised by Eng. Dr. Michael Lubwama and Eng. Dr. Peter W. Olupot both from the Department of Mechanical Engineering, at CEDAT.

Dr. John Wasswa, Department of Chemistry, College of Natural Sciences (CONAS), Makerere University was the opponent that interrogated the candidate to enable a clear understanding of the study.

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Makerere University Launches National Parenting Draft Manual

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The Director of Culture at the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, Ms. Juliana Naumo Akoryo (Centre) and Dr. Godfrey Siu, the Principal Investigator from Mak-CHDC (Right) interact with a participant at the workshop on 22nd July 2022, Kampala.

By Agnes Namaganda

On July 22nd 2022, Makerere UniversityChild Health and Development Centre (MakCHDC) launched a draft manual for the National Parenting Standards. The Centre has been working together with the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development (MGLSD) with funding from UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund), to develop standards that are agreeable to all organisations in the country that are involved in parenting work. The draft manual was being presented to members of a consortium that brings together all these organisations together, called the Parenting Agenda Consortium.

“We produce many documents and they are shelved,” Irene Ayot Chono, who was speaking on behalf of UNICEF said. “We hope that this document will not be one of them,” she emphasized.

Irene Ayot Chono-UNICEF, urging participants to utilize the manual once it is complete.
Irene Ayot Chono-UNICEF, urging participants to utilize the manual once it is complete.

Dr. Godfrey Siu, the Principal Investigator from Mak-CHDC who presented the draft manual to participants, emphasized that if any organization is doing parenting work, there should be a minimum package that they should offer.

Draft Manual Content

The manual which will have several modules. These modules will be delivered face-to-face in 1.5 hour sessions. Some of these include; Module 6 which will focus on “understanding responsible masculinity and fatherhood” and on “understanding the concept of head of family.”The draft manual also proposed that Module 11 focuses on Parenting in the 21st Century. Some of the sessions in this module will include Children and Technology, Contemporary Influence on Children and Modernity, Culture and Morality.Module 9 will focus on Parenting for Adolescents and some of the suggested sessions within this module are Needs for Adolescents and The Art of Communicating with Adolescents. Module 5 will focus on Preventing Violent Parenting and Promoting Alternative Discipline Strategies while Module 10 will be about Parenting to Address the Mental Health for Children and Adults.

Dr. Godfrey Siu, the Principal Investigator from Mak-CHDC presenting the contents of the National Parenting Standards Draft Manual.
Dr. Godfrey Siu, the Principal Investigator from Mak-CHDC presenting the contents of the National Parenting Standards Draft Manual.

Participants’ suggestions

After the presentation, participants raised several suggestions for discussion and consideration. These included whether there should be a module on spirituality since Uganda is a strongly religious nation. There was also the concern of how children in remand homes should be parented. Another concern raised by a participant was as to whether teachers who make an undeniable contribution to parenting, should be taken through the parenting manual.

A participant gives her input at the National Parenting Standards Draft Manual launch.
A participant gives her input at the National Parenting Standards Draft Manual launch.

In her closing remarks, Ms. Juliana Naumo Akoryo, the Director of Cultural Affairs at the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development (MGLSD) said that the manual is for the parenting organisations to utilize and not for MGLSD.

The Director of Culture at the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, Ms. Juliana Naumo Akoryo making closing remarks at the workshop.
The Director of Culture at the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, Ms. Juliana Naumo Akoryo making closing remarks at the workshop.

Ms. Chono also adjured the team behind the manual to use picture illustrations in the manual that can be relatable by the Ugandan parents.

Contact: Agnes Namaganda – agnesvioletnamaganda@gmail.com

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Launch of Mak-RIF Round 4 Awards & PhD Call for Proposals

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Mak-RIF 4 Awards and PhD Call For Proposals, 29th September 2022, 9:00 to 10:00 AM EAT.

Makerere University received funding from the Government of the Republic of Uganda, earmarked to support high impact Research and Innovations. This unique initiative arose after engagements between the top University Management and the Government of Uganda. This fund illustrates the increasing importance that the Government attaches to Research and Innovation as a driver of development and transformation. The objective of the fund is to increase the local generation of translatable research and scalable innovations that address key gaps required to drive Uganda’s development agenda. 

In the Financial years 2019/2020, 2020/2021 and 2021/2022 the Government of the Republic of Uganda through Mak-RIF has funded implementation of over 750 multidisciplinary research and innovations within the various Colleges, while engaging multiple stakeholders within and outside Makerere University. The Grants Management Committee (GMC) has finalized the award process for the Mak-RIF round 4 call for funding for this Financial Year 2022/2023.

The Grants Management Committee (GMC) hereby invites you to the Launch of the Mak-RIF Round 4 awards and PhD Call for Proposals scheduled to take place tomorrow Thursday 29th September 2022 from 9:00 to 10:00 a.m. EAT. 

Please use the following details to join the launch.

Register in advance for this meeting:
https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwpcu-urDIjE9ZgxdsbEmA2IkNMMiJVECt_ 
Meeting ID: 884 5662 9992
Password: 292624

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