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School of Law Praised for Reaching out to the Indigent

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The School of Law has been commended for their efforts in offering free legal services to the most needy communities surrounding Makerere University.

The community leaders drawn from Kikoni, Kivulu, Kasokoso and Kikubamutwe were beneficiaries of the three-day training for paralegals held from 18th to 20th November, 2020 at the Grand Global Hotel. It was organized by the Legal Aid Unit with support from the Democratic Governance Facility (DGF).

While presiding over the closing of the training, the Ag. Principal, Prof. Christopher Mbazira commended the team at the Legal Aid Unit of the School of Law for demystifying the ivory tower syndrome through working closely with the communities that benefit from the legal services offered by the unit.  He said through such efforts, the relations between Makerere University and the surrounding communities had improved over time.

He said the training covered subjects like the landlord and tenant relations that affect people on a day-to-day basis with a focus on the law and what pertains to it. He urged the participants to utilize the knowledge acquired to help their respective communities.

Prof. Mbazira said the interactions with the communities has been beneficial to law students since it offers a learning exposure through real life issues that shape their appreciation of the law.

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School of Law to construct UGX 7 Billion Block

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The Chairperson of Council Mrs. Lorna Magara (2nd R) flanked by Ag. Vice Chancellor & DVCAA-Dr. Umar Kakumba (R), Ag. DVCFA-Dr. Josephine Nabukenya (L) and Ag. Principal School of Law-Prof. Christopher Mbazira (2nd L) at the commissioning of construction for the UGX 7Billion School of Law Office Block on 6th July 2021, Makerere University.

By Musinguzi Harriet

The 6th of July 2021 was a monumental day in the School of Law Makerere University following the laying of the foundation stone for the new office block. The three storied structure will house Lecture, tutorial and seminar rooms, a library, a moot court, a cafeteria and a number of offices.  The project to cost Uganda Shillings 7.3 Billion is expected to be completed in a period of eight months with works undertaken by Symbion as the consultants and Ms CK Associates as the Contractor.

While presiding over the ground breaking ceremony at the School of Law, the Chairperson of Makerere University Council Mrs Lorna Magara affirmed the University’s commitment in ensuring that the structure is completed in the set time. She noted that the need for a new building for the School of Law was glaring and commended Government of Uganda for responding to the call made by Council and Management in availing resources for the project.  She noted that the approved designs provided for the needed infrastructure required by the School of Law to deliver on its mandate of teaching, research and knowledge transfer in the legal field. 

Mrs. Magara urged the Law faculty and students to support the University in the delivery on its mandate as provided for in the Universities and Other Tertiary Institutions Act and the National Development Plan 3 goal of Human development. She called for provision of guidance in policy making processes and administrative decisions that have legal implications.

She further said Universities were challenged to become centers of innovation noting that Makerere University had started realising some for the results through innovations like the Kiira EV vehicle and the Covid testing kits among others.  She pointed out the need to ensure the protection and reward of intellectual property rights.  ‘We need to find a way to protect and reward individual innovation and enterprise within publicly funded research while providing the right incentives for researchers and innovators’ she emphasized and further called for the support of the legal expertise in the School of Law in the enforcement of the patent rights for the innovators.

The Ag. Vice Chancellor and Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic Affairs Dr. Umar Kakumba noted that the all the prominent members of the bench except a few were products of the School of Law Makerere University.  He congratulated the management of the School of Law for the great work realized over time despite the challenges of space and infrastructure. He specially applauded the enthusiasm exhibited in the School of Law through legal research in the Human Rights and Peace Centre, the Community Outreaches undertaken by the Public Interest Law Clinic, and the Disability Law research and advocacy in the Disability Law and Rights Centre. 

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Mak-UPDF Roundtable Discusses Security in Development

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The Director-Dr. Zahara Nampewo (R) hands over a set of HURIPEC publications to Chief Political Commissar & UPDF Representative to Parliament-Maj. Gen. Henry Masiko (L) as Chief of Legal Services at the Ministry of Defence & Veteran Affairs and UPDF-Brig. Gen. Godard Busingye (C) witnesses on 15th June 2021, School of Law, Makerere University.

The School of Law, Makerere University through its Human Rights and Peace Centre (HURIPEC) today Tuesday 15th June, 2021 hosted a roundtable discussion with senior officials of the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) under the theme: Security in Development: Exploring Uganda’s Sectors of Economic Growth”.

Looking at the intersectionality of security, peace and development, the meeting explored specifically the role of the UPDF in advancing Uganda’s National Development aspirations and more broadly its contribution in the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals particularly Goal No. 16. With growing debate on the involvement of military in a number of sectors in Uganda such as, agriculture (Operation Wealth Creation), the wildlife and forest conservation (UWA & NFA), the water resource sector (fisheries) and, the oil and mineral resources (MPPU), there is hardly any scholarly analysis on such phenomenon, a gap that HURIPEC seeks to bridge. The UPDF established under the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, 1995, Article 208 and Article 209 (b) is required to cooperate with civilian authority such as Police and as provided in the UPDF Act, engage in productive activities. This meeting explored further the nature, contributions, impact and effectiveness of the military interventions in the ‘security in development’ discourse. Interestingly, the increasing shift of the UPDF from its primary role in defending the territorial integrity of the State to its vivid involvement in development sectors needs a much deeper analysis and inquiry particularly on the aspects of functionality of such sector institutions. The temptation to engage in the national economy beyond the traditional defense economy partly lies in the question of national interests one of which is building strong institutions including the military.

The roundtable comprised of; HURIPEC team namely; Prof. Christopher Mbazira (Principal School of Law), Dr. Ronald Naluwiro (Deputy Principal School of Law), Dr. Zahara Nampewo (Director, HURIPEC), Dr. Namwase Sylvie (Post-Doc Researcher) and Jackson Odong (Associate Researcher). The UPDF officials comprised of; Major General Henry Masiko, (Chief Political Commissar and the UPDF representative to Parliament), Brig Gen Godard Busingye (Chief of Legal Services at the Ministry of Defence and Veteran Affairs and UPDF) and Brig Gen. Felix Kulayigye, (Outgoing Member of Parliament representing UPDF and newly deployed to Operation Wealth Creation).

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Law Students Graduate During 1st Session of 71st Graduation Ceremony

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Soroti District Woman MP and Former Mak Guild President, Hon. Anna Ebaju Adeke (R) with fellow Master of Laws Graduands on Day 1 of the 71st Graduation Ceremony, 17th May 2021, Freedom Square, Makerere University.

By Harriet Musinguzi

A total of 25 Master of Laws and 286 Bachelor of law graduands were part of the 12,550 graduands awarded degrees and diplomas of Makerere University in various disciplines during the 71st Graduation ceremony that ran from 17th to 21st May 2021 at Freedom square.

The ceremony was presided over by the Chancellor Makerere University and the Minister of Education and Sports, Mrs Janet Kataaha Museveni was chief Guest.

In a statement read by Hon. Dr. John Chrysostom Muyingo the State Minister for Higher Education, Hon. Janet Kataaha Museveni congratulated the graduands, the staff of Makerere University and the parents for the efforts put into preparing the students despite the COVID 19 challenges.  She said Government is committed to continue investing in ICT infrastructure as one of the ways to ensure that distance learning is entrenched as an option in teaching.  She further congratulated Makerere University for the groundbreaking research over the past period which was transitioning the University into realizing its objective of being research led.

She pledged Government commitment towards continued support to Makerere University, which she described as a pioneer in higher education in the country trough mobilizing funds for salaries and other support.

The Chancellor Prof. Ezra Suruma congratulated Makerere University for the distinguished awards in the past year which he said, had consolidated the university’s global reputation as a leading research institution. He paid special recognition to staff and faculty for the excellent work done in preparing the students until their graduation. He expressed optimism, that the graduating students would have a transformative impact on the future of Uganda, the East African region and the entire Universe.

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