KAMPALA– The Minister of Education and Sports, Janet Museveni has revealed that pupils who missed Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE) after finding out that school administrators hadn’t registered them despite meeting all requirements will not have any special exams set for them.
Janet made the remarks on Thursday while tabling a statement after a concern raised by James Waluswaka MP (Bunyole West) who raised concern over the matter.
In her response to Parliament, Janet said that setting a special exam for the affected students would set a bad precedent for the nation.
However, Waluswaka pleaded with Janet pointing out that most of the affected children and making them wait for another year would put them at a great risk of unwanted pregnancies.
“Most of these children were girls and we shall lose the next speakers and minister of education. I want to request for this particular case, they aren’t even fifty, these children be given a special examination. I am told UNEB has special papers. Can’t we set these pupils exams?”
In her response to Waluswaka’s plea, Janet said; “But as I said, we would have set a precedent and this can’t be a one off thing and that is why we are having problems of considering another exam because there will never be a time when we say no. If they miss it, then they will have to do the following year.”
Democratic Party’s Medard Sseggona asked Janet if there Government was considering compensating the victimized pupils as a remedial measure.
The Minister however that at the moment, the Ministry is trying to establish if there were other pupils affected saying that Government is trying to make sure that all children in this country sit for exams at the same time.
She explained: “We don’t prepare for those who don’t sit. Now if we are following up to find out the actual numbers who may not have taken exams if we find there are many more than mentioned in the media.”
However, Sseggona called Janet to order protesting her attempts to assume there are more cases arguing that there are people who have already been victimized.
“There are those who haven’t sat for exams as result of your weak regulations as the regulator. The question is remedial compensation measure. Is she in order to continue assuming when the facts are there?”
Janet said that Government will determine what precautionary measures to be taken but right now, we are doing that.
Abbas Agaba (Kitagwenda County) asked if it was possible for the Ministry to find those responsible for the children missing exams and if Government will shoulder responsibility for the damages.
Janet said that the Ministry is still trying to investigate why students weren’t registered because the said schools had no examination centers but it isn’t the only schools without examination centers.
Deputy Speaker, Jacob Oulanyah asked Janet if there a system that can inform students and parents that the students are registered to sit for exams. “Is it possible to devise a system each registered candidate can find status of their registration of is or it too much?” Oulayah asked.
Janet informed Parliament that at the moment, there are already measures in place for candidates to find out if they have been registered.
It should be recalled that Parliament given the Ministry of Education an ultimatum to explain what remedies it has put in place for students who were forced to miss Primary Leaving Examinations.
The ultimatum followed reports that at least 20 Primary Seven pupils of Bahrain Nursery and Primary School at Buseyi Village, in Iganga District failed to sit for their Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE) which started on Monday and end today.
The pupils’ failure to sit for exams was after the school administration allegedly connived with Ministry of Education officials and misappropriated money meant for their registration.
According to the pupils, they paid Shs80,000 for registration and shs17,000 as facilitation for the two-day examination exercise, and an additional Shs7,000 in pre-registration fees and Shs10,000 for passport sized photographs.