After an illustrious 28-year career, Makerere University School of Public Health’s Former Dean Dr. William Bazeyo officially retired from university service.
Dr. Bazeyo, a Professor of Occupational Medicine walked onto Makerere University in August 1993 after being appointed as a Lecturer of Occupational Health at the School of Public Health.
At a Dinner organised by the Makerere University School of Public Health’s Department of Disease Control and Environmental Health held on Tuesday August 9 at Skyz Hotel, Kampala, Makerere University Vice Chancellor Professor Barnabas Nawangwe said Professor Bazeyo has selflessly served and made “incredible contributions” to the century old institution and the country.
“Professor Bazeyo is one of the very few Ugandans with whom I have had a lot of pleasure to work with. He is one of the very few people who genuinely loves their country. He is a true patriot. One of the things I found pleasure in working with Prof. Bazeyo is he is very open,” said Prof. Nawangwe.
He adds that Professor Bazeyo was a true asset attesting to his leadership abilities during the time he worked as Deputy Vice Chancellor, Finance and Administration.
“In that very short time that we worked together, we gained so much as Makerere University. We did so many things that had failed Makerere University in over 30 years. One time he told me I never take a no for an answer. Every assignment he goes on, he comes with an answer,” Prof. Nawangwe.
Among some of the achievements credited to Professor Bazeyo according to the Vice Chancellor was his great negotiation skills with government and several stakeholders that saw reduction of a long-standing debt from Ugx120bn to now less than Ugx.10bn.
The vice chancellor also urged staff to emulate Professor Bazeyo by having a positive attitude.
“He [Prof. Bazeyo] has demonstrated how much he loved Makerere University. Even when he left, he still comes and offers guidance. Thank you very much for having that kind of heart. It is very important to have a positive attitude to serve humanity,” Prof. Nawangwe.
Mrs. Lorna Magara, the Makerere University Council Chairperson described Bazeyo as a “larger-than-life” figure with a kind and generous heart.
“On this day Professor Bazeyo we celebrate the man you are. We thank God for who He has made you to be. God packages us uniquely. Just hearing the impact, you have had on so many lives, we thank you!” Mrs. Lorna Magara said.
She further praised Prof. Bazeyo for being a down-to-earth person citing that that he easily identifies with ordinary people irrespective of his status in society.
“Professor dines with the rich and the top of the tops but he will know the name of the person who is at the door. He will know the lady in the kitchen. Thank you for a large heart and for knowing even those that are faceless,” says Mrs. Magara.
On her part, Dean, Prof. Wanyenze hailed Prof. Bazeyo for his significant contribution to Makerere University and particularly the School of Public Health.
“If you had not done your part, we couldn’t be where we are today. I picked on from you and everything you left I was able to move on with it because I was building on a strong foundation. I hope you will continue to support us,” said Prof. Wanyenze.
She emphasized that the School of Public Health has been privileged with successive strong and progressive leadership that has continued support the School even when they leave. She thanked the previous leadership of the School including Prof. David Serwadda, Prof. Fred Wabwire-Mangen, Prof. Kakitahi, Prof. Bukenya, Prof. Namboze, among others for their incredible leadership.
“People who have been part of MakSPH are always a part of us—please keep with us. We pray for excellent health for you and for a peaceful retirement.” Prof. Wanyenze said.
Representing the Principal, Professor Isaac Kajja, the Deputy Principal of the Makerere University College of Health Sciences urged the School of Public Health not to lose a person of Prof. Bazeyo’s stature.
Prof. Kajja praised Professor Bazeyo for his kindness and his passion for farming.
“I briefly interacted with Prof. Bazeyo as a Student in my 4th year medical school. But he left something to us. He was kind to us and I remembered how kind you are until I started working with you. Indeed, what these people from School of Public Health have said is right. He is a very kind gentleman. Sincerely that kindness, you will not go away. Even if you try to leave Makerere, with that kindness I know you will come back,” Prof. Kajja said.
He also requested Prof. Bazeyo to continue working and support the School of Public Health and the entire College of Health Sciences.
Prof. Kajja equated the gesture of thanking its staff and those retiring to his former Mentor’s advice the late Church of Uganda Archbishop Dr. Livingstone Mpalanyi Nkoyoyo who preached about thanking people always.
“It is extremely important to thank people in a timely manner. Immediately thank people when they are still available. That is what I learnt from Archbishop Mpalanyi Nkoyoyo. Why am I saying this? Professor Rhoda Wanyenze and your team, thank you for thanking Professor Bazeyo in a timely manner. When I also leave, the office of the Deputy Principal please thank me. Organize a thank you for me. Don’t wait to thank somebody when we are burying him. Let us develop a culture of thanking people when they are still alive,” Prof. Isaac Kajja appealed.
Professor Bazeyo has been instrumental in fundraising for the new building for MakSPH. Prof. Rhoda Wanyenze revealed at the function that she inherited approximately 1.9bn Uganda shillings from Prof. Bazeyo for construction of the MakSPH building at his handover. She says this money has now increased to more than 12 billion shillings, thanking Bazeyo and the former leadership for having the School at heart.
What staff say about Bazeyo
Prof. David Serwadda, a former Dean of MakSPH says the School has for long dreamed of having a spacious home. “Infrastructure was always on everybody’s mind right from Prof. Gilbert Bukenya’s time through to Prof. Wabwire’s time and to date. Dr. William was very proactive in building and going through various stages of designs and also fundraising for the School.”
Prof. Serwadda says Dr. William Bazeyo was his successor as the Head of Department of Disease Control, his Deputy Dean as well as Dean.
“The School of Public Health has been lucky. Every leader that has come on as far as I can remember builds on the previous leaders’ achievement and the School of Public Health is where it is now because of contribution from each of the previous leadership. Professor Bazeyo definitely did build on,” says Prof. Serwadda.
Associate Prof. John C. Ssempebwa, a former Head of Department of Disease Control and Environmental Health congratulated Professor Bazeyo on his retirement and cited that Department had benefited greatly from his contribution.
“It was an honor to work with a person who was committed to the success of their co-workers. I have learnt a lot from working with you over the years. I do remember when you used to come to our offices mainly in the mornings to check on us how we are doing socially but also professionally. We really loved that and it encouraged us,” Dr. Ssempebwa said.
Associate Prof. Esther Buregyeya, the Head of Disease Control and Environmental Health Department just like Professor David Guwatudde hailed Bazeyo for his great lobbying skills that have seen the Department, School and University benefit immensely from the networks.
“As you usually say, I negotiate till I get YES for an answer, indeed Professor Bazeyo that is what you are,” said Dr. Buregyeya.
According to Dr. Lynn Atuyambe, an Associate Professor in the Department of Community Health and Behavioral Sciences, Professor Bazeyo’s reign at MakSPH saw a log growth in the grant portfolio, academic growth and finance.
Mr. Amos Ashaba Dembe, the internal auditor at MakSPH hailed Prof. Bazeyo for his availability to offer quick solutions and being able to network the School in the entire Makerere and across the various government institutions.
“He would have right and valid contacts at any one time you approached him with a challenge. Sometimes when we are implementing the researches that we manage, you may get stuck either because of policy gaps but whenever you would call on Prof. Bazeyo, he would have the right contacts,” said Ashaba Dembe.
Dr. Fredrick Edward Makumbi, Associate Professor and former Deputy Dean thanked Bazeyo who through his ambitious targets nurtured and saw the establishment of the Staff SACCO which he said had benefited several staff.
In equal measure, Ms. Enid Kemari said; “I think this Sacco has not left us the same. Most staff who have joined this SACCO, their financial status has improved. We have been able to save, but also do some investments which I think is very good.”
Professor Christopher Garimoi Orach praised Prof. Bazeyo for being a result-oriented person; “Apart from fighting for what he believes in very firmly, William is a doer and focused on results. It is really very pleasant to work with him.”
Dr. Elizeus Rutebemberwa, Professor and Deputy Dean MakSPH says he learnt a lot during his time at the helm of the School as someone that wished to see everyone contribute.
“He once narrated how he went to China and visited a factory. In the evening as workers were leaving, each would say, I have been a contribution. And to me, the take home message was every day, one comes to work, one should not just take tea and breathe air but be a contribution to solving challenges facing our country,” Prof. Rutebemberwa.
Professor Bazeyo speaks out
While delivering his remarks, Prof. William Bazeyo thanked Makerere University for the opportunity to serve the nation. He also urged all university staff to always leave a trail in all their work so that they are remembered for their good deeds.
“I want to thank God for this time. I listened to the memory lane and I have listened to what a lot of people have said and it brings me a lot of memories. I want to thank God again for our institution. That you come into an institution, it nurtures you. When the Vice Chancellor talks about these negotiations, meeting donors and so on. Not that you go and say I must! But you have that inside power that it is not yours,” Prof. Bazeyo highlighted.
“It is what you decide to be that you become. I want to thank the university management and council for approving the Master of Environmental and Occupational Health which I for long has been passionate about. If I was allowed, I would come and give some introductory lectures.
I want to thank the university for nurturing me and accepting me. I am not very simple. Some of you know. As they said I don’t take no as an answer and I don’t believe in failure. And I don’t believe that we can’t do a lot. I thank the University for having been patient with me, especially the Vice Chancellor for accepting me to be his Deputy,” Bazeyo says.
He thanked the School of Public Health, his mother Department for nurturing him and equally urged the staff to build networks.
“Professor Rhoda said money or resources do not make everything. Indeed, they don’t. Because all those things come from partnerships and friends. If you don’t have them, you have nothing. She has told us the partnerships that the School has, and that is why the School is ranked high. Let your address be that that means something to communities, humanity, to donors and to other institutions,” Prof. Bazeyo.
Professor Bazeyo apologized for errors and mistakes that he could have made while at Makerere University and asked for forgiveness from those that were hurt by his actions.
“I want to sincerely apologize if in the time I was at the School, I could have offended you either in writing, talking Forgive me those whom I hurt,” Bazeyo remorsefully said.
Born on June 22nd, 1957, Professor Bazeyo clocked mandatory retirement age of Makerere University on September 22nd 2017 having joined the University in 1993. He was offered a post retirement contract for four years as a Professor, in the Department of Disease Control and Environmental Health running from June 2017 to June 2021.
In March 1998, Prof. Bazeyo was promoted to rank of Senior Lecturer, Makerere University and subsequently secured a promotion to the rank Associate Professor in 2011 and later Professor in 2015.
In September 2009, Professor Bazeyo was named Dean, a position he held until September 2017 when he handed over to the current Dean, Prof. Rhoda Wanyenze upon completion of his term of office.
Professor Bazeyo later rose through the university leadership ranks to become Deputy Vice Chancellor, Finance and Administration, Makerere University and later the Head, Grants Administration and Management Support Unit (GAMSU)
During his tenure in MakSPH, he served as the Head of Department of Disease Control and Environmental Health in 2003.
The 19th RUFORUM AGM in Yaoundé calls for consolidated efforts towards transforming higher agricultural & tertiary education to contribute to sustainable development & food security in Africa
The Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM), a consortium of 163 universities in 40 African countries held its 19th Annual General Meeting at the Palais De Congres in Yaoundé, Cameroon from 28th October to 2nd November 2023. The first of its kind in West and Central Africa, the RUFORUM AGM 2023 provided an opportunity for over 600 delegates from Africa and beyond including; Ministers, Development Partners, University leaders, students, private sector leaders; farmers and farmer representatives; emerging and early career researchers as well as other key stakeholders in agriculture and higher education to share experiences and chart a way forward for transforming higher agricultural and tertiary education to contribute to sustainable development in Africa under the theme: Transforming Higher Education to Sustainably Feed and Create Prosperity for Africa.
Officially opened by His Excellency Paul Biya, President of the Republic of Cameroon, represented by Professor Jacques Fame Ndongo, Cameroon’s Minister of State, Minister of Higher Education, the 19th RUFORUM Annual General Meeting in Yaoundé provided a platform for participants to deliberate on key strategies for transforming higher agricultural and tertiary education to contribute to national, continental and global development as well as building consensus among key stakeholders in agriculture and higher education on the actions required to strengthen the role and/or integration of universities in agricultural and national development processes in line with the aspirations of the African Union Agenda 2063 ‘The Africa We Want’.
In a speech presented by Professor Jacques Fame Ndongo at the official opening ceremony, His Excellency Paul Biya, President of the Republic of Cameroon stressed RUFORUM’s significant efforts to support the African Union Agenda 2063 when he said, “RUFORUM’s vision 2030, makes the body a significant contributor to transformation of Africa and vehemently seeks to harness the discovery, engagements and learning of vibrant transformative universities to catalyze sustainable, inclusive agricultural development to feed and create prosperity for Africa.”
According to him, it is worth indicating that agriculture in Africa should be understood in its broadest sense to include but not limited to animal and crop production, livestock, wild life, fisheries and forestry. Hence RUFORUM’s mission since its inception in 2004, of strengthening the capacities of universities to foster innovation responsive to demands of small holder farmers through the training of higher quality researchers, the output of impact-oriented research and maintenance of collaborative working relations among researchers, farmers, national agricultural research institutions, the Private sector and government is worthy prioritizing.
He called upon participants to use the meeting forum to change the face and image of the African continent through constructive and fruitful deliberations on agricultural production, food safety research and better health food security. To him the RUFORUM AGM is a bigger opportunity to think and act, make proposals, formulate recommendations and necessary resolutions which if acted on can change the face of the African continent.
“This is the turning point for the African continent to think big and have the courage to dream big. This is our opportunity to make a difference in our world. This is the opportunity Africa needed to change the target of its demand of action. We have to mutualize and federate our actions and voices in the interest of a united, strong and prosperous Africa,” he said.
The 19th RUFORUM Annual General Meeting carried a unique vibrant turn as being the first to be held in West and Central Africa. The weeklong event broke the record as the most and well attended ever with over 600 participants across the region as well as international delegates. The colorful event was embroiled with informative, constructive, edutainment activities in form of pre-AGM events, side events, Business Meetings, capacity building and mentoring sessions, scientific conferences, poster sessions and exhibitions well aligned to key thematic areas as well as the AGM theme: Transforming Higher Education to Sustainably Feed and Create Prosperity for Africa.
Additionally, high-level policy dialogues with Ministers, Senior Government Leaders and Development Partners were held to review the finance and other resource mobilization strategies as well as following up on the actualization of the available national, regional and global policies geared towards higher education transformation and ensuring of food security in Africa.
Speaking at the Opening Ceremony, Prof. Theresia Nkuo-Akenji, the RUFORUM Board Chair and Vice Chancellor University of Bamenda thanked His Excellence Paul Biya and the Government of Cameroon for accepting to host the 19th RUFORUM Annual General Meeting and equally appreciated the financial support towards the same cause.
In a special way, Prof. Theresia Nkuo-Akenji thanked the Ministry of State for Higher education and all the sister ministries of Government of Cameroon that worked hard to see to it that the 19th RUFORUM AGM is a success. Equally, the Board Chair, extended her sincere gratitude to the people of Cameroon for the warm reception and support.
“My special tribute goes to the members of AGM 2023 Sub committees. You have indeed done a great job throughout the ten months of organizing this significant event. On behalf of RUFORUM Network, I thank you. To the RUFORUM Secretariat under the dynamic leadership of Prof. Patrick Okwori, accept our immense gratitude for your strong determination and dedication,” she gratefully said.
She recognized the tremendous achievements and developments aligned to RUFORUM’s nineteen years (19) of existence noting that the strong network has wisely selected its priority areas of focus to transform higher education and agricultural sector in Africa as;
- Reform the training agenda for Africa to meet the development needs
- Entrepreneurship and business incubation for wealth creation
- Research for Development and wealth creation
- Partnerships for scale and impact
“As African people, permit me to use the adage of a broom; it is easy to break a single broom piece but when you combine several small brooms together they then make a broom stack that will not be easy to break. The collective power that RUFORUM has put together through 163 universities from across 40 countries bears such strength. The Vice Chancellors gathered here today remain committed to the core values and foundations of the network. To illustrate this Your Excellency, each of the Vice Chancellors meet their own costs of participation.” She happy said.
In the same spirit the RUFORUM Executive Secretary Prof. Patrick Okori deeply thanked the host Universities that is, University of Bamenda, University of Ngaoundere, University of Dschang, University of Buea and University of Maroua under the strong and able leadership of the RUFORUM Board Chair, Prof. Theresia Nkuo-Akenji for successfully hosting the 19th RUFORUM Annual General Meeting.
He also recognized the Former Vice Chancellor of University of Ngaoundere Prof. Florence Uphie Chinje Melo who heavily supported the AGM preparations. He was astonished with the presence of the Africa Development Bank, MasterCard Foundation, research international communities, RUFORUM for Agricultural Research in Africa, the Africa Forum for Agricultural Advisory Services, sub regional Agricultural organizations such as the Association for Strengthening Agricultural Research in Eastern and Central Africa (ASARECA), the Centre for Coordination of Agricultural Research and Development for Southern Africa (CCARDESA) and the West and Central African Council for Agricultural Research and Development (CORAF).
“You have all provided support for this engagement, thank you very much. Together we will continue this journey of transforming Africa’s Agricultural and higher education to produce human resources and development solutions that Africa and indeed the world needs,” he said.
Reflecting on the AGM’s theme, Prof. Okori emphasized the need for Africa to become food secure when he said, “Africa must be an equal opportunity creator for the young generation, it must create wealth for its people and provide opportunities for the present and future and these are well summarized in agenda 2063. It is our collective duty therefore to turn these opportunities and actions into investment.”
According to him, the RUFORUM Network remains strong in building capacity and providing the necessary development solutions and opportunities. He noted that Africa generates about 10-12 million job entrants annually but the continent’s economy in its current configuration can only produce 3 million jobs. To him, for Africa to therefore reap from its demographic dividends, there is need to strengthen the paths to demographic transition of keeping young girls in school.
Prof. Okori also mentioned that RUFORUM is currently intensifying its inclusion and diversity targets. From 45%, the network has an ambitious target of at least 70%. “We must slow the rate at which girls give birth when young. It is the only way we are going to benefit from our population dividend,” he said.
According to him, the higher degree needs for Africa is pretty dire. The World Bank recommends 10,000 PhDs to Africa. This can be compared to India whose signal population of 1. 4 billion registers 24000 PhDs a year. The pressure therefore on Africa’s side to intensify graduate training is real.
“Our graduate training in sciences therefore is one of the drivers to achieve this and it is the immense reason as to why in this meeting we have social and development partners. We are launching a journey with the Africa Development Bank that will bring us together as apex organizations in Africa to work together and solve our own challenges. However, as we do all these, we need to celebrate Africa. We should be recognizing and celebrating people who made what Africa is today,” he said.
Africa is informed by a number of important mutually interacting factors that collectively, are affecting the growth and progress of the continent. The economic outlook of the African continent in 2023 by the African Development Bank and other global apex development financial institutions was positive. However, Africa’s economic growth has since then decelerated, and is now projected to be lower than the previously projected rate of 4.1%.
Agriculture a key sector, continues to be affected by both natural and human induced factors. It continues to face serious threats from climate. Studies by the United Nation’s Convention to Combat Desertification show that Africa accounts for 44% of severe droughts recorded globally in the last 50 years, causing economic losses of more than USD 70 billion. In 2022, an estimated loss of US$ 8.5 billion in economic damages was experienced due to climate change. Clearly, climate change and weather variability, remains one of the grand challenges of the 21st century for Africa and the World, because it affects key livelihood and strategic areas of emerging economies.
Unemployment facing Africa’s dominant demographic-the youth, raises questions about education, skilling and jobs creation while inclusion and diversity, the underpinning for an equal society, remains challenging. The question then to academia, researchers, development practitioners and policymakers is, “what step must we take right now to address the challenges to our current and future generations?”
“Our resounding response as RUFORUM is in line with what Malcolm X said many years ago, “Education and research for development are the passports to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today,” said Prof. Partick Okori.
According to the Deputy Minister for Education in Malawi, Her Excellence Mdooko Nancy Chawola who represented the visiting ministers of RUFORUM partner countries, African countries should put in place vibrant resource mobilization mechanisms to collectively finance Africa’s education and support governments that are battling with competitive budgetary demands.
“For the universities to offer solutions for the challenges the continent is facing, there is need to rebuild the curriculum that responds to our current needs and not what we needed yesterday. Our respective countries are grappling with higher levels of unemployment, can investors assist by producing graduates with entrepreneurial skills so that they are able to employ themselves and others. Of course there will be need to put in place support mechanism for such graduates to take over,” she said.
She equally acknowledged the national regulatory frameworks such as the Malawi Regulation Framework 2063 developed inline with the African Union Agenda 2063 the Africa we want, in which the continent aspires to be prosperous by 2063 through various means such as modernizing agricultural for increased production and productivity there by making people food secure.
She applauded RUFORUM’s efforts towards zero hunger in Africa through its vision 2030. According to Mdooko Nancy Chawola, food security is supposed be prerogative as well highlighted in the Sustainable Development Goal 2 (SDG 2) that is geared towards ending hunger, attaining food security, improving nutrition and promoting sustainable development.
In Cameroon, Agriculture and Education have been prioritized as drivers for economic growth and transformation. Through an agricultural flagship program initiated by His Excellence Paul Biya, science programmes and financial services as well as favorable ways of accessing market have been introduced in the country with the aim of transforming agricultural sector into a value added industrialized and integrated system engine of economic growth.
According to Prof. Ngomo Horace Manga- Vice Chancellor, University Buea, the government of Cameroon has resolved to grant its people with education that can help them manage their personal, national and Africa’s present and future economic destiny. In 2022, His excellence Paul Biya endorsed the recruitment process of 2000 lecturers in universities to ensure the quality of higher education in Cameroon.
“Collectively these education reforms and investment actions affordably can transform the people of Cameroon into a strong emerging market. Cameroon carries the highest science female adoptive rate in sub-Saharan Africa at 73%. This is a strong result of government delivery of United Nations SDG 5 of achieving education and build human capital for the country,” he noted.
The Opening Ceremony for the 19th RUFORUM Annual General Meeting unlocked the floor for critical discussions and meetings throughout the week. At the same function, RUFORUM presented a contemporary painting to His Excellence Paul Biya, President of the United Republic of Cameroon in recognition of his outstanding, selfless and patriotic services s to the people of Cameroon and Africa at large.
On 25th October 2023, the RUFORUM Network equally participated in the Cameroon Higher Education Day, the first of its kind in the country.
2nd Issue of Mak-Research & Innovations Fund Bulletin
Welcome to the 2nd Issue of the Mak-RIF Bulletin. Makerere University has continued to receive funding from the Government of the Republic of Uganda, earmarked to support faculty members to conduct high impact Research and Innovations that contribute to national development.
In this issue of our Bulletin, we share about how the Mak- RIF Research Agenda and themes highlighted there in are guiding and contributing to our operations, awards made in the past financial years, a highlight of the research achievements, impact to-date, and a flash back to some of the fund activities among others.
Dates for 74th Graduation Ceremony
The Academic Registrar wishes to inform the public that the 74th Graduation ceremony will be held from Monday 22nd to Friday 26th January 2024.
DATES FOR THE DIFFERENT COLLEGES/SCHOOLS
DATE: MONDAY, 22nd JANUARY, 2024
- College of Natural Sciences (CONAS)
- College of Health Sciences (CHS)
- School of Law (SOL)
DATE: TUESDAY, 23rd JANUARY, 2024
- College of Education and External Studies (CEES)
- College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES)
DATE: WEDNESDAY, 24th JANUARY, 2024
- College of Business and Management Sciences (COBAMS)
- College of Computing and Information Sciences (COCIS)
- College of Veterinary Medicine, Animal Resources and Bio-Security (COVAB)
DATE: THURSDAY, 25th JANUARY, 2024
- Makerere University Business School (MUBS)
DATE: FRIDAY, 26th JANUARY, 2024
- College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT)
- College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHUSS)
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