By David Mafabi
Education matters but integrity in society matters a lot—corruption hinders prosperity, causes long-term damage to society and raises the cost of everything at the expense of equity and quality.
The way we address corruption in society also matters but strategies that focus on monitoring or punishing specific instances of corruption are too often politically motivated and fail to address the root causes of corruption.
If our goal is reform that eliminates transparency gaps, perverse incentives, and contradictory or confusing regulations that lead to corruption, then we must reform education in our schools, institutions of higher learning to include the soul, spirit and body.
It is not enough for an education system to merely answer the academic needs of the body without appreciating that moral instruction is a key factor in transforming the student to enable him to fit well and make a contribution to his own society.
Whereas a human being has the body, the soul and the spirit, Universities and other Institutions of higher learning have been merely teaching academics and professionalism to enable the body fit at the place of work and left out the moral instruction that caters for the mind and soul to create total transformation.
And the failure by our education system to include moral instruction in the teaching profession to cater for the soul and spirit in schools is the main cause of corruption and moral decadence amongst Ugandans.
And as long as our education system does not address the soul and the spirit to reform the person, our dreary educational establishment will remain irrelevant as we produce thieves, the corrupt, murderers, immoral people who can’t fit in society.
This country has remained a corrupt nation because our education system does not transform the person but merely reforms him.
The Holy Bible gives a comprehensive attention to the whole human being but institutions of higher learning/ schools have relegated morality to the church that is why many university graduates come out as liars, uncivilized, crooks, thieves, prostitutes, sectarian etc.
Instead of merely teaching academics, schools/ Universities and other institutions of higher learning in Uganda should identify aspects of education that would enhance morals, practical skills, civilization and sustainable development in a bid to end the escalating corruption levels.
The Holy Bible says in Genesis that man was created in the image of God and that God gave this creation a comprehensive attention, this means we must present a positive image of God everywhere but unfortunately our graduates leave school as thieves, murderers, robbers, liars, corrupt because the other aspect of life that enhance morals, civilize a person were not taught.
The biblical injunction in Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
It is my belief that critical values are best instilled while a child is still young and our education in schools and universities should, therefore, focus on providing an integrated value-based education to ensure holistic training of children – physically, intellectually, socially and spiritually in order to help in ending corruption.
It is high time the government to redirected its policies in Education to re-shaping morals, Education for sustainable development and be able to identify aspects of education that would enhance attaining of the sustainable development goals.
It is clear that although institutions of higher learning/schools have taught academics and produced very good grades, what is lacking is education for the spirit and the soul that are responsible for a person’s transformation.
It is unfortunate that our leaders don’t realise that a human being has got the body, spirit and soul, what universities and other institutions of higher learning are doing is to just reform the body academically.
In Uganda, you have chief accountant walking out of the University with only an academically equipped body and once he gets a job, he becomes a ‘Thief’ accountant just because the spirit and the soul were not addressed at schools.
In order to fight corruption successfully in Uganda, we must change our education system to give our people a complete education that addresses the body, soul and spirit to fight corruption, nepotism, theft of government funds, robberies and other social ills eating up our society.
Our Universities/schools should incorporate all aspects of life in the education of the children at all levels to enable them to have a complete education that would redirect the country on the right path to morality and development.
David Mafabi is a senior journalist and a writer at www.pmldaily.com