KAMPALA – Members of Parliament from the ruling NRM party have okayed Makerere University’s 15 percent tuition increment policy that recently caused a two week-strike at the public institution.
The ruling party MPs reached the decision during a party caucus meeting chaired by President Museveni at State House Entebbe on Monday evening.
The decision will have chilling effects on university, implying that students who won’t be able to meet the demands of the tuition policy will have to leave the public institution.
Sources that attended the meeting said the MPs agreed to the President’s decision after he said Makerere University has the lowest fees structure of all public institutions in the region. He is reported to have compared some of the courses at the university such as Bachelor of Medicine to those of the University of Nairobi where such a course goes to Shs15m compared to Makerere’s Shs3.5m.
The President is said to have told the lawmakers that it is time tuition fees at the university is calculated per unit cost, meaning that someone pays fees as per the requirements of the course.
Mr Museveni is also reported to have said the government should take over the wage structure of the university to enable it concentrate on infrastructure development and quality control.
The NRM parliamentary caucus meeting comes after President Museveni on Friday, November 8, met the University Council led by Ms Lorna Magara where he presented the same proposals that he presented at the Monday meeting with MPs.
It is not immediately clear how students will react to the news. But following the Friday meeting with the University Council, Makerere University Guild President Julius Kateregga condemned the President’s proposal on fees increment, saying it would drive many students out of school.
Parliament’s Committee on Education is currently investigating the strike chaos Makerere that attracted a heavy beating on students by the military about two weeks ago.