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73rd Graduation: College Research Highlights

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1. College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES)

Over 300 quality publications

The College continues to rank high in teaching, research and innovations that align with the strategic direction of the University and address both the national and global development priorities. Over the past one year, the faculty at College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences have produced cutting-edge research and innovations that have greatly uplifted the ranking and position of Makerere University. Last year alone, the faculty at the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences produced over 300 publications and we congratulate the staff upon this milestone.

Outstanding Societal transformative projects and innovations

The KeBERA App

Organic Agriculture (OA) is a rapidly growing sector due to health concerns by consumers. Globally, Uganda is only second to India in terms of the number of organic producers (210,000 VS 1,366,000). Uganda was the first African country to develop a National Organic Agriculture policy-supporting environment in 2019. Despite an annual global organic market worth $100 billion USD, annual organic exports from Uganda only account for $50 million USD of the totaI. Agricultural products from Uganda are usually rejected in international markets due to standard challenges. 45% of organic products in Uganda are reportedly contaminated and this poses a danger to health. To minimize the challenge, researchers led by Prof. Fred Kabi from the Department of Agricultural Production, CAES developed an App that detects pesticides and aflatoxins in organic foods. The KeBERA Organic App was designed by a group of researchers from CAES, the College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS) and the College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT). The App has been validated against globally recognised tools and proved suitable for field use and complies with the Food Safety Standards set by the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO). Research and development of the APP was supported by the CAES Innovation Scholars Programme (CAESISP) which offers an eighteen-month opportunity for CAES academic staff to work as interdisciplinary teams to solve problems in the food systems in Africa. The Programme is supported by Michigan State University’s Global Centre for Food Systems Innovation (GCFSI).

Launch of SophiA Project to Aid Remote Health Facilities

Sustainable Off-grid solutions for Pharmacies and Hospitals in Africa (SophiA) is a 4-year multi-disciplinary project commissioned in December 2021. SophiA aims at improving health service delivery in remote areas of Africa through provision of electricity to health facilities, preservation of medicine, water purification and improvement of hospital room temperatures in remote areas.  I commend our researchers, especially Dr. Nicholas Kiggundu the Principal Investigator for their efforts towards addressing challenges in our health system. I also thank the European Union for funding this project.

Launch of edible insect products and standards

CAES Researchers led by Dr. Dorothy Nakimbugwe in collaboration with Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) in 2022 launched the edible insect products and standards. The products include shelf-stable, safe and well packaged grasshoppers, cricket enriched flours, snacks, and cookies enriched with crickets. By formally setting standards through this initiative, farmers and entrepreneurs dealing in grasshopper and cricket enriched enterprise are likely to accrue maximum economic benefits while the market will have safe and secure products. I applaud SIDA and BioInnovate Africa for supporting this noble initiative.

Introduction of 24 new sweet potato varieties on the Ugandan Market

Our scientists in collaboration with experts from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), Uganda National Agricultural Research Organisation, Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute Mikocheni (TARI-M), Addis Ababa University and Rwanda Agricultural Board introduced 24 new elite varieties of sweet potatoes on the Market and farming systems of Uganda. This was achieved through a collaborative project titled “Enhancing Food Security Through Improved Seed Systems of Appropriate Varieties of Cassava, Potato and Sweet Potato Resilient to Climate Change”, also funded by SIDA and Bio-Innovate Africa and led by Prof. Samuel Kyamanywa.

MaRCCI Elevated to an African Host Centre for PhD Training in Plant Breeding and Biotechnology

Makerere University Regional Centre of Excellence for Crop Improvement (MaRCCI) was identified as a premium centre train quality PhDs in Plant Breeding and Biotechnology, and is now known as an “African Host Centre (AHU/C)’. As an AHU/C, MaRCCI is charged with training quality PhD students from across Africa to address the human resource gap of highly qualified specialists in the fields of Plant Breeding and Biotechnology. As an AHU/C, MaRCCI will be supported by the Partnership for skills in Applied Sciences, Engineering and Technology – Regional Scholarship Innovation and Fund (PASET – RSIF) to undertake this training in five Priority Thematic Areas of Food security and Agri-business.  

Unveiling a hybrid solar dryer for perishable agricultural products

CAES in collaboration with Green and Gold Uganda Ltd, Badaye Technologies Ltd, and the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development constructed a Hybrid dryer to support drying of perishable agricultural produce. The hybrid solar dryer has a loading capacity of 300 kg of fresh and sliced fruits (approximately 450 pineapples each weighing 1 kg on average) per drying batch. This will greatly minimize postharvest losses.

Launch of CAES Botanical Gardens

The College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) through the School of Forestry, Environmental and Geographical Sciences on 6th December launched the first CAES Botanical Gardens at Makerere University Agricultural Research Institute Kabanyolo (MUARIK). The Botanical Gardens will cover 30 acres of MUARIK land. This is one of the College initiatives geared towards the protection, conservation and recreation of ecosystems. The gardens will also be used for teaching and research. During the launch, over 300 trees were donated to the Gardens.

Commissioning of the New CURAD Incubation Hub

The Danish Ambassador to Uganda, H.E. Nicolaj H Petersen on 31st March 2022 commissioned the new CURAD Incubation Hub at the Namanve Business Park.  The Consortium for enhancing University Responsiveness to agribusiness Development (CURAD) is a public-private partnership initiative promoted by Makerere University through the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES), the National Union of Coffee Agribusinesses and Farm Enterprises (NUCAFE), National Agricultural Research Organization (NARO) and NIRAS international. CURAD is one of the six agribusiness incubators in Africa supported by the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa under the UniBRAIN facility with funding from DANIDA. It has in place a revolving fund to support incubatees to develop their agri-businesses to sustainable levels while paying back to CURAD to sustain its activities in a mutually beneficial arrangement.

FLYGene Project

Makerere University College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES), in partnership with AARHUS University in Denmark, International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE), University of Nairobi, and Marula Proteen Limited, is undertaking a research project titled FLYGene (Sustainable and efficient insect production for livestock feed through selective breeding). FLYGene is a new project funded by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs with the overall aim to enable the implementation of selective breeding of the Black Solder Fly (BSF) for improved livestock feed availability in Kenya and Uganda by generating new knowledge of insect genetics, genomics and phenomics.

2. College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS)

PIM Centre of Excellence

Government, through the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development accepted to take over support to the Public Investment Management Centre of Excellence at the College. The Centre supports government to provide advanced practical oriented training in Tools for Public Investment Analysis as well as research.

EfD-Mak: Inclusive Green Economy

The Environment for Development Centre won funding to the tune of 400,000 US dollars from SIDA to support capacity building for senior government officials in the area of Inclusive Green Economy. This is part of the ongoing efforts globally to ensure inclusive and sustainable economic growth. The Center also successfully hosted the Joint Cross Country Workshop of the global network of EfD Centers at an event that took place in Kampala in July 2022.

B.Com Accreditation & Actuarial Science Reward Scheme

The quality of Programmes at the College has continued to attract valuable partnerships. The ACCA Global accredited our Bachelor of Commerce Degree program and in so doing has given an exemption of eight of the possible thirteen papers to students graduating from our Bachelor of Commerce Degree Programme. The College also partnered with Prudential Assurance Uganda Limited to recognize outstanding students of Actuarial Science Programme. The leading five students graduating from the Programme will receive a full scholarship to pursue the Professional Actuarial qualification in addition to a cash prize of USD500.

3. College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS)

Smart Classroom and Robotics

In 2022, the University through the College of Computing and Information Sciences launched the First Smart Classroom and Robotics Technology for teaching in Uganda worth over $100,000 funded by the Chinese taxpayer and education technology companies under the auspices of UNESCO.  The facility is for recording, broadcasting, and automation of the classroom environment. The Robot undertakes Artificial intelligence functionalities such as speech recognition, identification, photo taking and management of attendance.

Mak QuickTest App

The  Mak QuickTest App won the Huawei Continental ICT Competitions 2021-2022 held in South Africa.  A team of students led by Rutanana Arnold designed the App for diagnosis of HIV/AIDs and Malaria on a smart phone where data is directly uploaded onto the Ministry of Health servers for monitoring and support in terms of sensitization and medication. Uganda is one the countries spending billions buying HIV and malaria testing kits hence, the technology aims at reducing the burden on the budget on such expenses, patient transport and stigmatization because the patient can do it anywhere without  being afraid of the doctor or other people knowing their HIV status.

AirQo

The ‘AirQo’, one of the innovations spearheaded by Prof. Engineer Bainomugisha, manufactures low-cost air monitors to empower communities to advance air quality management. 100 devices have already been installed in many Ugandan municipalities and in at least 25 cities in 10 African countries including Dar es salaam, Senegal, in Doula Cameroon, and soon will be rolling out to Lagos, Nairobi, and other cities. The technology has featured on international media. During the UN General Assembly, it was one of the highlights of the technologies for climate change being produced in Africa.

Smart Bee Monitor

The solar powered sensor technology was introduced by Dr. Julianne Sansa Otim for monitoring and management of bees. The ‘smart bee monitor” was designed in the college lab and deployed in the field in December 2022. It enables a farmer to monitor the behavior and health of their bees from the comfort of their home. It uses the internet of things (IoT) technology to monitor the temperature, weight, carbon dioxide, and humidity of the beehive. By delivering the bee sounds, images, and videos, the system can give the farmer notification of pest invasion, disease infestation, disruptions caused by pollution, hive strength, and opportune time to harvest the honey.

AI-based Mobile Tools

Dr. Joyce Nabende is leading the Artificial Intelligence Lab (AI). She has developed  AI-based mobile tools to monitor diseases that affect agricultural production in Uganda. AI is one of the grants and works that excite students. A number of technologies that directly answers to both local and international demands have been developed including the Tool for fraud detection in mobile money transactions, Device for the blind to move without human aid, AI app to identify and deter birds from cereal farms and the Boldungu Mobile App for primary children to improve performance in Mathematics.

4. College of Education and External Studies (CEES)

University-wide Extension of Online Learning

In line with the university strategic plan, the College of Education and External Studies has embarked on a university-wide extension of online learning. With a grant from the MasterCard Foundation, every college will have an e-learning laboratory. Training across the university is conducted by the Institute of Open Distance and e-learning (IoDEL). Online education allows you to enjoy a more flexible schedule, reduces the cost of your degree, and allows you to more easily develop your career alongside furthering your education.

Entrepreneurship Skilling for Kampala Ghetto Youth

As we are aware, Makerere University is transitioning into a research-led and research-intensive University as well as building knowledge transfer partnerships. The College of Education and External Studies has embarked on an entrepreneurship skilling program among the ghetto youth in the divisions of Kampala, funded by the Government of Uganda, through the Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund (MakRIF). The program will not only create employment, but also reduce crime in and around the city. These skillsets will contribute to the successful implementation of the Government of Uganda’s Parish Development Model (PDM), the SDG 8 “Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all”.

Contribution to Education Policy Review Commission

Staff in the College of Education and External Studies have continued to greatly contribute to the development of Uganda’s education sector. Our staff are part of a committee tasked with reviewing the education sector. The major objective of the Education Policy Review Commission is to investigate several issues in the Education and Sports Sector; generate recommendations and draft a White Paper (Macro Policy) framework for Education and Sports services. The output of the Commission is envisaged to be a new Government White paper on Education and Sports which will reposition the country’s Education and Sports system to meet the needs and challenges of the 21st century. 

5. College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT)

MAPRONANO ACE

The six-million-dollar World Bank funded Africa Center of Excellence for Materials, Product Development and Nanotechnology (MAPRONANO ACE – CEDAT) consolidated its activities through cutting-edge research and development in nanotechnology, nanomedicine, science artificial intelligence and engineering. The following prototypes/products have been developed and scaled towards commercialization:  3 diesel engines (being deployed in scale-up products for pumping water, electricity generation and tuku-tuku van; 1 Solar weed cutter; 1 Robotic tractor; 1 Saliva diagnostic test kit for COVID 19; 2 Vaccine delivery systems i.e., Lipid nano particles, silver nanoparticles and Chitosan Nano particles; Antimicrobial Nano coated mask; Paramagnetic nano particles for DNA extraction test kit (applications for COVID test kits); and Graphene-based batteries from maize cobs and coffee husks for electronic devices like TVs, computers, watches and for electric vehicles. The project has been able to attract more grants totalling US $ 1,934,636 for commercialization of the Nano adjuvant project, Saliva project, Development and Manufacture of Medical Plastics in Uganda and others. During this 73rd graduation ceremony, MAPRONANO ACE has supported a number including: 2 PhDs from Mechanical Engineering; 1 PhD from Physics; 1 PhD Medicine; 1 PhD from Veterinary Medicine; 20 MSc. from Engineering, Science and Medicine. There are 5 graduating in regional universities.

Master of Science in Land Management

CEDAT received funding from the World Bank through the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development under the Competitive and Enterprise Development Project to run the newly approved Master of Science in Land Management. This programme is designed to address the skills, knowledge and scholarship gap in the increasingly complex land sector. Through the funding the department of Geomatics and Land Management will receive state-of-the art equipment, textbooks and support for staff exchange. The funding also provides full scholarships for 10 Masters students and the College has received its first intake – thus building on the University’s vision of becoming a Research Led University addressing pertinent societal challenges. The collaboration with the Ministry of Lands Housing and Urban Development has fostered the automation of the land registry systems. Customary land titles have been made and distributed to various communities in districts such as Kabale. The customary titles have increased the security of the tenure and they will reduce land conflicts, land grabbing and encroachment. These will protect the land rights for women, children, the elderly and marginalized,

Support to University Projects

The College has continued to support the University in obtaining solutions to the university infrastructure challenges. Staff and students of the college have been involved in design and supervision of a number of projects at the university such as the Main Administration Building, the perimeter wall fence, the indoor sports stadium and others. The college has been instrumental in setting up the Muteesa II Memorial Museum. The public is invited to visit the museum and have an experience of Kabaka Muteesa II’s journey.

Inclusive Art Education

The college spearheaded community activities such as the Ntinda School for the deaf to do advocacy for inclusive art education. This development was celebrated during International Deaf Week 2022 through an art exhibition in which lecturers, students and the deaf community presented their works. The college took the lead in using art to raise funds to support brain surgery for children with hydrocephalus and brain tumors at Cure Children’s Hospital in Mbale in Eastern Uganda. The College also hosted a photography exhibition based on the experiences of refugees from West Nile in Northern Uganda Rhino camp in Northern Uganda.

Workshop for Masons/Fundis

In partnership with the National Building Review Board and key local companies manufacturing building materials, the College organised a pioneer skills and knowledge enhancement workshop for the masons/Fundis from the five divisions of Kampala during  February 2022. Over 120 Masons/Fundis received training in modern building design and construction technologies. The training was also intended to bridge the existing gap between the training institutions and local communities as well as to share the accumulated knowledge and skills in building design and construction at CEDAT. This year, the training has been scheduled for 1st  – 3rd  March 2023 and 150 Fundis will benefit from the initiative.

6. College of Health Sciences (CHS)

Innovations in Health training, research and health care

The College of Health Sciences is a leader of health-related research in sub-Saharan Africa region and continues to impact health outcomes nationally and globally. As a research-led college that promotes graduate training and research, the college launched a state-of-the-art PhD lounge to provide dedicated space for a conducive environment for graduate students and early career scientists to read, write, innovate and conduct blended seminars and webinars with scientists in different part of the country, region and globally.

As a leading college in translational research, the College of Health Sciences has developed research laboratories to perform specialized immunology and genomics research and acquired the latest flow cytometry and sequencing equipment; and currently hosts the Human Heredity and Health in Africa (H3Africa) biorespository which facilitates fundamental research into diseases on the African continent – led by African scientists, for the African people. This year the college graduated the first cohort of 21 bioinformaticians (MSC Bioinformatics) and has a growing program in bioinformatics and data science. 

East Africa hub for capacity building for Vaccine Research

The College of Health Sciences also hosts the East Africa hub for capacity building for Vaccine research under the Africa Research Universities Alliance (ARUA) and is a member of the ARUA center of excellence for Non-Communicable Diseases. Together with the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm Sweden, Makerere University College of Health Sciences hosts a virtual Center of Excellence for Sustainable Health, which aims to develop capacity and actions to drive the agenda towards sustainable health.

COmmunity-based Education, Research and Service (COBERS)

Graduates of the College of Health Sciences are skilled during their training through the community-based education, research and service (COBERS) program where all the students spend time in different communities throughout the country to experience health care, research and service in the communities they are prepared to serve. Clinical graduate students also have opportunities to serve the community through several surgical camps that are co-hosted with international specialists to promote advanced surgical skills and technology transfer to Uganda. Some of the country’s best specialist interventional cardiologists, nephrologists, gastroenterologists, neuroscientists, infectious disease specialists, to mention, but a few, are faculty members at the college of health sciences.

Research Dissemination

Faculty and students at MakCHS have opportunities to disseminate their research findings to impact health care nationally and globally. As a part of the 16th Joint Annual Scientific conference MakCHS hosted international scientists under the theme at which MakCHS co-hosted the 1st National Antimicrobial resistance symposium and the 3rd International conference on Mining and occupational Health (MinOSH). 2023 has also started great; as Makerere University College of Health Sciences together with the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI) hosted the 11th International meeting on Cryptocococcus a leading cause of death among HIV/AIDS patients. These results have influenced policy and practice globally including World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines and FDA approval of point-of-care diagnostics and treatments.

The College of Health Sciences continues to provide an environment that develops life-long learners and transformational leaders in science and innovation to meet our community’s health needs in the 21st Century.

7. College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHUSS)

Three staff nationally and internationally recognized:

i. Grace Bantebya Kyomuhendo,  a Professor of Women and Gender Studies, advocate for gender equality, social transformation and respect for women’s rights was appointed President National Academy of Sciences (UNAS) . UNAS was created to provide credible, balanced, and evidence-driven advice to the nation on matters of science and development.

ii. Susan Nalugwa Kiguli, An Associate Professor of Literature, was in August  2022 appointed as the international consultant/ Judge for the Nigeria Prize for Literature 2022 Edition of Africa’s most prestigious prize for literature. Kiguli will be identifying poetic talents in Nigeria.

iii. Rev. Sister Professor Dominica Dipio, a Professor of Literature and Film received the SIGNIS-Africa Award of Excellence for Contributing to the Communication Apostolate in Africa during the premiere SIGNIS-Africa delegates Conference held in Kigali, Rwanda in July 2022. SIGNIS-Africa recognized, for the first time, individuals and organizations – Africans and non-Africans – who have, over the years, contributed to the vision and mission of SIGNIS-Africa, which is basically to enhance human communication and to provide a forum for people to speak out. 

Celebration of the lives of four (4) former and living alumni whose works have marketed Makerere University

Recognition of employees and alumni is one of the best investments you can make in creating value for an individual, and for the organization.

i. The living 90-year old former prominent music lecturer, conductor, dancer and professional performer in the recent history of Arts Education in East Africa Zadok Adolu-Otojoka was honored in March 2022. Adolu served as Head of Department of Music, Dance and Drama (now Performing Arts and Film) in the mid- to late-1990s and was particularly famous for his charismatic conducting of the university anthem and the mesmerizing leadership of the academic procession during Makerere graduation ceremonies.

ii. Novelist and Poet, Professor Timothy Wangusa, who clocked 80, had his birthday and legacy celebrated by his Alma mater Makerere University in July 2022. His literary works were hailed for nurturing many literature giants and branding Makerere University as a top breeder of academic excellence. Wangusa tirelessly strived to improve his art which he has kept on sharing with his  colleagues, students and readers.  Wangusa is one of Uganda’s prolific writers well known for his novel, Upon this Mountain and his Psalms 23 poem.

iii.The Distinguished Professor of English and Comparative Literature Prof. Ngugi Wa Thiong’o was honored in August 2022. Ngugi’s body of work represents the highest level of achievement in fiction, non-fiction, poetry and/or drama. His more than three dozen books, plays, poetry and essays have been translated into more than 30 languages. Ngũgĩ was celebrated for shaping culture with daring and original written works in novels like Weep Not Child, A Grain of Wheat, The River Between and Wizard of the Crow. 

iv. In December 2022, the university   paid glowing tribute to iconic African writer Prof. David Rubadiri in appreciation of the professional and personal relationship that he has cultivated in the course of both his outstanding career as a poet, as well as his intermittent teaching in the department of Literature.

8. College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS)

Development of the Kesha Anti-Fungal and Anti-bacterial gel

Our students from the Department of Biochemistry and Sports Science, College of Natural Sciences, led by Mally Anthony, currently in his third year developed Kesha Anti-fungal and Anti-bacterial gel to help fight infections in women. The gel was certified by the Uganda National Bureau of Standards and can be bought from supermarkets and pharmacies within Kampala but also from the College of Natural Sciences, Makerere University.

Providing solutions to the National historical problem of poor performance in Biology at Uganda Advanced Certificate Examination (UACE)

Makerere University through its School of Biosciences in the CONAS recently analysed the academic performance in Biology at UACE for nearly half a century. We observed that since the late 1970s, academic performance in Biology at UACE has never been at its best, and recently, it only deteriorated further to worrying levels as observed almost every year whenever UNEB results are released.

For example, in the UACE sitting of 2018 whose results were released in February 2019, UNEB statistics show that a total of 13,061 candidates sat for Biology countrywide, and of these only One (1) candidate scored an “A”. That year, only up to 38% of the candidates scored at least an “E” leaving almost 80% failed (score O or F). In the next year’s sitting of 2019, only 44 candidates countrywide scored “A” in Biology. This trend was found quite repeated several times before 2018 and has not improved to-date post COVID-19.

The danger is that Biology is crucial because the subject alone accounts for 70-100% of our entire academic and research work in the CONAS, CHS, COVAB and CAES at Makerere University. This means that poor performance at Advanced level affects the totality of life-sciences academic and research ecosystem in Makerere University, numerous other essential sectors, and MDAs of Uganda government whose mandates are hinged on Biology.

To solve this problem, Makerere University through the School of Biosciences in CONAS in partnership with CEES under the supervision of the office of the DVC-AA has embarked on addressing this grand challenge.

Establishment of a Petroleum Field Research Station in the Albertine Graben

As Uganda moves to the next stages of petroleum development, there is need for highly skilled workforce at various stages of exploration, development, production, transportation and refining. However, the progression of teaching and research in these fields has been largely hampered by serious shortage of sector specific physical infrastructure especially laboratories. With support from the Government of Uganda through the Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund (MakRIF), the College of Natural Sciences established a Petroleum Field Research Station in the Albertine Graben to support practical training in petroleum studies. The training facility is located at the Makerere University Biological Field Station (MUBFS) in Kibaale.

Biofuel production

Our researcher from the Department of Chemistry successfully produced Biofuel from water hyacinth through the hydrothermal liquefaction process. The researchers have successfully produced the bio-crude oil (on lab scale) and characterized it. They have now embarked on the process of upgrading the bio-crude oil to the different bio-fuel fractions such as petrol and diesel. We thank the Government of Uganda for funding the project through Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund (MakRIF).

Micro gasifier – improved cooking stove

Our researchers from the Department of Chemistry designed and developed a micro gasifier; as an improved cooking stove with potential to offer clean cooking and biochar production. The gasifier uses biomass materials as the primary sources of energy and has the potential to generate clean fuel (producer gas) with a blue flame that is smoke free. The project was supported by the Government of Uganda through Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund (MakRIF).

New Method of Measuring Stress Levels in Plants

Just like animals and human beings, plants too can be stressed. Whereas one may easily detect stress in animals and humans basing on their behavior, plant “behaviour” is not easy to interpret. Plants under stress cannot reproduce or grow well because they have to divert much of their physiological energy to fighting stress. If the plants are critical food crops, this will lead to perpetual food shortages because their energy resources are spent fighting stress. A new study titled “Sandwich Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay for Quantification of Callose” and led by a team of scientists at the Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology at Makerere University in collaboration with the University of California, Davis, USA, shows how stress in plants can be measured.

Boosting maternal and child health using small pelagic fishes

Through the NutriFish Project, researchers at the Department of Zoology, Entomology, and Fisheries Sciences, College of Natural Sciences utilized small fishes to produce five (5) high-value nutritious fish-enriched products (baby food, sauce, maize meal, snacks, and seasoning) especially targeted to mothers and their young children, who are particularly vulnerable to micronutrient deficiencies. The products are offering a more diverse and more sustainable diet. A mukene recipe book was also developed to improve mukene consumption and endorsed by the Minister of State for Fisheries. We appreciate our development partners- the International Research Development Centre (IDRC) and the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) who supported this initiative.

Launch of the Natural Products Industry Advancement Network Africa (NAPIANA)

The Natural Products Industry Advancement Network Africa (NAPIANA) through its transdisciplinary approach aims at bridging the gaps between the stakeholders along the different Natural Products Value chains in order to advance the Natural Products Industry in Africa. The idea to establish NAPIANA was motivated by the fact that the Natural Products Industry in Africa was far behind compared to those in Asia and Europe yet Africa is richer in Biodiversity. We applaud our researchers from the College of Natural Sciences for this noble venture that will greatly support and strengthen the standardization of the Natural products industry in Uganda.

9. College of Veterinary Medicine, Animal Resources and Biosecurity (CoVAB)

Centre for Biosecurity and Global Health (CEBIGH)

With ADB funding, highly specialized laboratory facilities have been established that are spearheading critical research to solve national and global Challenges. The Centre for Biosecurity and Global Health (CEBIGH) is one of those units supported by the Government of Uganda, through the Science Technology and Innovation (STI) secretariat. At this center, CoVAB is spearheading the development of Covid-19 sub unit Vaccine and anti-tick vaccine.  The vaccine prototypes are being tested in laboratory animals and glad to let you know that the results show great potential.  Also ongoing is the development of points of care or rapid diagnostic tests tools using covid 19 and human African trypanosomiasis or sleeping sickness. In this study, two prototypes are already being tested and the goal is to slowly initiate the development of similar tests for malaria and other diseases like cancer.  Further, CoVAB is now positioned to be a one stop center for laboratory animals experimental testing, useful for testing efficacy of drugs and vaccines before further testing on human subjects.

Institutional Animal Care and use Committee

In line with the University’s vision of being research led, CoVAB, the School of Veterinary and Animal Resources (SVAR) 2017 established the Institutional Animal Care and use Committee (SVAR IACUC) which has played a pivotal role in collaboration with Uganda National Council for science and Technology (UNCST) in guiding the research policy of the nation.  The college supported the national efforts towards the formulation of the national guidelines for research and teaching involving of animals.  The guidelines provide a framework for scientists, institutional animal care and use Committees, facility managers, sponsors, funders, teaching institutions and animal care staff to consider while planning to use animals in research and teaching. The college with support from the Government of Uganda is working towards enhancing the capacity of the existing centers namely Nakyesasa and Buyana to become fully fledged research centers.

Field Attachments and Community Outreaches

The strategic direction of the college in teaching and learning is to have increased presence in the community.  To date, all our students in veterinary medicine, biomedical Sciences and animal production participate in mandatory field attachments and community outreaches and are spread throughout the districts where they are gainfully engaged in service learning. Through this program Makerere University is being taken various communities and institutions including local government (Districts), farming communities, the National Parks and other animal related places.  This however requires a lot of logistical support in form of transportation and availing the required inputs for student service learning. This therefore, calls upon the Government of Uganda and other stakeholders to come to us as we take Makerere University to the community.

Dairy Demonstration Farm Facility

The college formerly received the Korea Rural Community Corporation (KRC) supported Dairy Demonstration farm facility on Thursday 25th August 2022. This facility is supporting the college efforts of improving productivity in the Dairy Value chain. Makerere University appreciates the support given by the Republic of Korean Government in establishing this facility, which is not only to serve as a model farm in training students, dairy farmers, extension workers and Artificial Insemination Technicians but also helped the establishment of an elite dairy herd at Makerere University working closely with National Animal Genetic Resource center and Data Bank.

10. School of Law (LAW)

Makerere University Law School, is the oldest law degree awarding institution in Uganda. Established in 1968, the School continues to make significant contribution to human resource development in the legal profession.  Many of the School’s alumni are in high offices in the Judiciary, in Parliament, in the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, in Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), in Local Governments, and in corporate entities and NGOs at the national and international levels. The School of Law’s products in legal practice constitute the best and the most sought-after advocates in this country. The School is also playing a pivotal role in producing legal academics for the many emerging law faculties in the Government and private Universities in Uganda.  

New Specialized Masters Programmes

In addition to the traditional degree programmes i.e., the Bachelor of Laws (LL.B), Master of Laws (LL.M) and Doctor of Laws (LL.D); the School of Law has developed two new specialized demand-driven Master of Laws degree Programmes. These are the Master of Laws in Human Rights Law and Practice and Master of Laws in Corporate and Commercial Law. These two Programmes are at the tail end of the approval process. Developing new demand-driven graduate programmes is important more especially now when Makerere is shifting focus to graduate training and becoming a research-led institution of higher learning.

Moot Competitions

Makerere University takes pride in providing different opportunities for our learners. One of the areas that our School of Law participates in is Moot Competitions at national, regional and international levels. The School of Law excelled at various moot competitions in 2022; The Makerere University School of Law (SoL) team (Ms. Kevin Nakimbugwe and Mr. Edwin Sabiti) are reigning champions of the All Africa Human Rights Moot Competition held in July 2022 in Cairo, Egypt. The competition attracted a total of 50 Law Schools, 38 of these were from English speaking countries in Africa. SoL students also excelled at the Inaugural Arbitration Moot competition held in Nairobi, Kenya, November 2022; organised by Chartered Institute of Arbitrators – Kenya Chapter. Our students also won the Inaugural Tech Law Moot Court Competition held in October 2022 at Cavendish University, Kampala-Uganda. The Moot futured discussion of issues pertaining to Technology and the Law. We also won the Constitutional Law Moot organised by the Centre for Health, Human Rights and Development (CEHURD) held in November, 2022.

General

Mak Gender Mainstreaming Directorate Holds Reflective Workshop on Promoting Women’s Participation in Leadership

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Some of the participants at the workshop pose for a group photo. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.

By Racheal Kanya

“Position yourself and make yourself visible and known for something”, this was among the many takeaway points for participants at the reflective workshop for the women leaders at Makerere University. The workshop held on the 13th June 2024 in the Auditorium at the Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility (CTF 2) was convened by the Directorate of Gender Mainstreaming (GMD) at Makerere University. It was one of a series of activities that have been conducted by the Directorate under a project titled: Enhancing women’s participation and visibility in leadership and decisionmaking in Universities in Uganda through action and evaluation research, 2019-2024.  This is one of the multi-year research projects funded under the Makerere Research and Innovations Fund (MakRIF) and is led by the Director GMD, Dr. Euzobia Mugisha Baine. Participating Universities are: Makerere, Gulu, Busitema, Mbarara University of Science and Technology, Kabale and Muni.

Purpose of the workshop

Held under the theme – Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing, the purpose of the workshop was to provide a forum for experience sharing among female staff in middle and senior level leadership and management positions equivalent to M3-M5 salary scale.

Setting pace for experience sharing, the Director, Directorate of Gender Mainstreaming at Makerere University, Dr. Euzobia Mugisha Baine briefed participants on the mandate of GMD, outlining the policies and their role in promoting gender equality at the University. In her remarks, she noted that the mandate of GMD is derived from two main policies namely; i) the Makerere University Gender Equality Policy 2009, which envisions Makerere University to become a gender-responsive University in which substantive gender equality is reality, and ii) the Makerere University Policy & Regulations against Sexual Harassment of 2006, as amended in 2018 with a vision to coordinate, facilitate and monitor the integration of the gender dimension into the core functions of Makerere University  including; Teaching and Learning, Research and  Innovations, Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, and Support Services.

Dr. Baine noted that the purpose of conducting the workshop was;

  1. In response to two strategic areas of the GMD Gender Equality Policy namely;
  2. Gender-responsive staff recruitment, training, promotion and recognition (eg numbers of women and their progression),
  3. And promotion of women’s participation in leadership and decision-making organs (numbers and visibility).

Other objectives included; Providing an opportunity for participants to understand the gender and leadership landscape in Higher education, enable them appreciate the gender-based challenges along women’s career path and how to overcome them, and to generate strategies on how women senior staff can position themselves for future leadership.

Dr. Baine delivering her remarks. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Dr. Baine delivering her remarks.

In her presentation, Dr. Baine who is also the project Principal Investigator, called upon women to gain confidence and stand out whenever leadership opportunities arise. “There is need for women to be on the discussion table, making decisions as opposed to keeping at the back. It is high time women gained confidence and took on these leadership opportunities. It all starts right from where you are,” she said.

Factors holding back women from taking up leadership roles

Presenting the research findings on behalf of the project team, Dr.  Anna Ninsiima noted that despite all efforts at national and international levels, women were persistently fewer in leadership and decision-making organs in both public and private universities. The main objective of the study was to conduct a situational analysis of the gender terrain of the  six public Universities to obtain baseline information encompassing: composition of governance and leadership organs by sex, composition of senior staff by sex, needs assessment and profiles of potential mentors and mentees, capacity to conduct gender-responsive research, exploration of men staff engagement in gender equality/equity interventions, and to establish a functional Uganda University Women Forum starting with the 6 universities.

Dr. Anna Ninsiima sharing the research findings. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Dr. Anna Ninsiima sharing the research findings.

Dr. Ninsiima revealed that according to the feedback collected, the main causes of low numbers of women in leadership in universities were;

  1. A strong disconnection between the laws and policies at national level and the Universities,
  2. Patriarchal traditional norms and perceptions regarding female leadership, where there is unacknowledged institutional bias against women leaders,
  3. Top positions in the University are political and require women to do more background work, and to lobby their way into leadership positions,
  4. Institutional-toxic, militaristic environment. Unsaid resistance by institutions,
  5. Personal – poor self-image and esteem, want soft landing- some fear judgment,
  6. And social/family background.

Prof. Rhoda Wanyenze on promoting women’s participation in leadership

The Dean, School of Public Health, Prof. Rhoda Wanyenze urged women to dedicate time to understanding themselves better, capitalize their strengths,  acquire soft skills and competencies, and to rebuke toxic talk if they are to effectively participate in leadership. “Leadership starts with understanding yourself. Speak to yourself, identify good things in you, know you capabilities and work on your weakness. There is need for women to mentor each other, its one way of uplifting ourselves. We also need to know that not everyone can make it into leadership – some of us have to open doors for others to get there. Let’s sponsor each other and avoid toxic talk that holds us back and encourage each other into these leadership spaces,” she noted.

Prof. Wanyenze sharing on the role of senior women leaders in nurturing the next generation of women leaders in the academia. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Prof. Wanyenze sharing on the role of senior women leaders in nurturing the next generation of women leaders in the academia.

Strategizing for leadership

Sharing on her leadership experience, the Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic Affairs, Bunyoro University, Prof.  Grace Bantebya Kyomuhendo advised women to strategize and use every opportunity available in leadership by showing up, even when they know they will not win the race. “Mere showing interest is a visibility gate for you to be known and adopt good networks in the world. If you intend to be a leader, study the big picture. You have to prepare, get the skills, get collaborations, know what you want, be available and willing to take on responsibilities. Study the environment and be careful how you share your intentions with people. If there is an opportunity and you have interest in it, apply for it, if you go through, that’s great, if you don’t, you won’t die, other doors will still open,” she advised.

Prof. Bantebya advising women on positioning oneself for the leadership journey. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Prof. Bantebya advising women on positioning oneself for the leadership journey.

Genesis and mandate of GMD

The Chairperson Makerere Council Committee responsible for Gender Mainstreaming who also doubles as the Dean, School of Women and Gender Studies, Prof. Ssali Sarah revealed that the Gender Mainstreaming Directorate came to existence by visionary women who also contributed to the establishment of the School of Women and Gender  Studies with  mainly  two objectives;

  1. To promote gender parity
  2. To monitor  and hold people accountable

She reiterated the need to address the behavioral and structural barriers that limit women from rising and staying in leadership noting that this will help have more women occupy the leadership spaces in the universities.

Prof. Sarah Ssali sharing the history of the Gender Mainstreaming Directorate. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Prof. Sarah Ssali sharing the history of the Gender Mainstreaming Directorate.

The newly appointed Principal, College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHUSS), Prof. Helen Nkabala urged women to acquaint themselves with the different university policies if they are to effectively compete and take on leadership positions.  “Know what is required of the leadership space you are vying for. You need to do policy spotlighting and read the human resource manual well as you aspire for leadership,” she advised.

Left-Right: Prof. Wanyenze, Prof. Bantebya and Prof. Nkabala during a panel discussion on strategies for promoting women’s participation in leadership. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Left-Right: Prof. Wanyenze, Prof. Bantebya and Prof. Nkabala during a panel discussion on strategies for promoting women’s participation in leadership.

Emphasizing the need for women to support each other into leadership, she appreciated Prof. Wanyenze for looking out for her when she showed interest in taking up leadership in the Makerere University Academic Staff Association (MUASA). “Prof Wanyenze reached out to me and encouraged me. This greatly motivated me. As women, we need to support each other into these positions.”

Remarks by the DVCFA

Representing the Vice Chancellor of Makerere University, the Deputy Vice Chancellor, Finance and Administration, Prof. Henry Alinaitwe commended the Directorate for organizing the workshop to empower women leaders and pledged management to take action on the resolutions.  

The DVCFA Prof. Alinaitwe giving closing remarks. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
The DVCFA Prof. Alinaitwe giving closing remarks.

He thanked the Directorate for holding the Male engagement roundtable to discuss issues pertinent to them. He decried the dropping numbers of male graduates and called for an investigation into the causes.

Proposed objectives of a 4W Initiative Pilot at Makerere University

The Director for Africa 4W Women and Wellbeing Initiative at the School of Human Ecology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA, Ms. Deborah Kaddu-Serwadda noted that Uganda can leverage the successes of Makerere University’s gender mainstreaming policy to build a critical mass of university students, faculty, and staff, able to work together. She mentioned some of the proposed objectives of a 4W Initiative Pilot at Makerere University, Uganda as: piloting an interdisciplinary multigenerational higher education collaboration for the promotion of gender equality and women’s wellbeing. The pilot project would further initiate an academic women leaders’ South to North research-to-action network for gender equality and social transformation.

Some of the participants sharing their leadership experiences. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Some of the participants sharing their leadership experiences.

Giving the background on the women in leadership training workshops, a Principal Gender Officer at GMD, Ms. Susan Mbabazi  noted that the programme had accomplished many activities such as ; 1) A situational analysis of the gender terrain of the 6 universities focusing on among others the gender composition of staff in leadership positions, 2) Development  of training guides/manuals on women in leadership, mentorship, gender responsive research and male engagement, and 3) Findings of the situational analysis in the six participating universities were disseminated in each of them.

Ms. Susan Mbabazi deliberating on the successful accomplishments of the program. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Ms. Susan Mbabazi deliberating on the successful accomplishments of the program.

Ms. Mbabazi noted that that the programme still had pending activities such as conducting workshops using the developed training guides/manuals in all participating universities starting with Makerere University.

The Senior Gender Officer at GMD, Mr. Eric Tumwesigye commended women for being supportive and inspirational. “All the ladies I have moved and worked with in my life journey have really been inspirational,” he said.

The workshop was moderated by Mr. Tumwesigye and attended by senior academic and administrative female staff of Makerere University.

Mr. Eric Tumwesigye moderated the workshop. Gender Mainstreaming Directorate (GMD), School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS), CHUSS workshop for women leaders under Mak-RIF project titled; Enhancing Women’s Participation and Visibility in Leadership and decision-making organs of Public Universities in Uganda through Action Research, 13th June 2024, theme: ‘Nurturing women in University leadership through mentorship and experience sharing’, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Mr. Eric Tumwesigye moderated the workshop.

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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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