Makerere University Guild President Roy Semboga speaking to the press on Friday
Walking around the main campus at Makerere University on Friday, one couldn’t help but notice busy activity; soon-to-be graduates picking their invitation cards ahead of the graduation ceremony that starts next week on Tuesday.
Elsewhere in the premises of the campus, others were seen buying graduation gowns to add colour to the prestigious life event.
But while these cannot wait for Tuesday to come, some hundreds of students who claim to be eligible to graduate are not certain about being officially conferred on their Degrees. Their names are not on the graduation list.
They have lodged their complaints to the authorities including the Academic Registrar and the Vice Chancellor but both offices say the matter is beyond their making. Management claims the students’ names were submitted late.
On Friday, the University Council convened a daylong meeting to discuss among others, the issue of over 400 students who are to miss graduation.
ChimpReports has learnt that the Council meeting resolved to constitute a committee to verify the affected students and establish whether indeed they are eligible to graduate.
“The meeting has resolved to set up a committee to verify individual cases starting Monday and after verifying you, they will issue a transcript for students to graduate next year in 2018,” the Students’ Guild President Roy Semboga told journalists on Friday afternoon shortly after he stormed out of the Council meeting.
He however added; “We as student leaders disgree with this position by the Management. As we speak, our ream is in the courts of law and we are also going to petition the Ministry of Education so that the issue is resolved expeditiously.”
Some of the students whose names are missing on the graduation list and the Guild President hold hands outside the main building praying for the success of their graduation
According to Semboga, over 474 students from the Colleges of; Humanities and Social Sciences, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and School of Education have their names missing on the graduation list.
“Some of our colleagues (students) have their marks but the system doesn’t reflect them. That isn’t our problem as students.”
“The university must understand that its role is to impart knowledge in and graduate students who meet requirements like some of the students do,” Semboga added. He said he was proceeding to the Ministry of Education after speaking to the press.
Meanwhile, some of the affected students were chanting “How long does it take to verify someone?” outside the university main building where the Council was meeting.
ChimpReports spoke to one of them, Imamanuel Khaukha a student of Agribusiness Management to get his personal reaction to the issue.
“They are promising us to graduate in 2018 but remember I have been here for 3 years and my parent is waiting for my graduation. It doesn’t make sense. It is unfair to us,” Khaukha told ChimpReports.
He went on to say; “All we want is to graduate come Monday. I don’t think that including our names on the graduation list has a financial bearing on the university. Even if it did, we paid a graduation fee.”
Imamanuel Khaukha, one of the affected students during an interview with ChimpReports
Khaukha questions the logic behind issuing a transcript (as the Council agreed) to a student if the Management was not convinced that the student was eligible.
This is not the first time Makerere University is entangled in a situation of a similar nature. The process of clearing students for graduation has become a perennial problem in addition to several other problems.
Last year, faced with the same issue, the Management at some point suggested holding another graduation ceremony in one year for students who were eligible but missing on the final list.
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