KAMPALA – The Law Development Centre (LDC) is set to embark on offering weekend programmes in a move aimed at increasing enrollment of students at the Centre over the medium term after it was established that admission to the Bar course has declined due to failure of pre-entry exams to the course.
In the new strategy, LDC plans to start weekend programmes at the main campus for the Administrative Officers’ Law course. In addition, LDC is in the process of starting an evening programme for the Bar course and post-call Bar Course for lawyers that have studied their Bar course abroad.
Details of the new plans were revealed in the report by the Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee on LDC’s 2019/2020 ministerial policy statement which highlighted that abolition of Appropriation in Aid (AiA) affected the institution because the resources were being utilized for training administrative officers in the upcountry study centres, meet costs of trainers, allowances for lecturers who teach the Bar course.
The abolition of donor funds left LDC grappling with a shortfall of UGX2.3b to meet the above activities and if the evening lectures are brought on board, LDC expects to collect UGX10b in non-tax revenue to government, a proposal that saw the Committee ask government to avail the additional UGX2.3b to the LDC’s recurrent budget to enable the Centre continue with the said activities in order to collect more revenues.
During the consideration of the Centre’s budget, the Committee observed that LDC is decentralising its activities as a result of the increase in the number of persons studying law at universities in Uganda and LDC being the only institution offering post-graduate training; the physical and education facilities at LDC are inadequate.
Worse still, the development budget FY20l9/2020 has remained the same at UGX3.4b despite the growing numbers of students and UGX2b will be required to procure equipment and continue with the expansion of the existing infrastructure, funds the Committee wants to be availed to enable LDC continue with its expansion drive.
LDC’s total budget for FY20l9/2020 is UGX15.3b excluding aid an increment by UGX5.2b when compared to FY2018/2019 budget and the increment is due to re-allocation of the AiA to LDC activities after the abolition of retaining it at the source. During the FY20l8/20l9 LDC had a total budget of UGX18.5b including AiA of UGX8.3b.