×

Warning

JFolder::create: Path not in open_basedir paths.

My Blog

Poll Question

Uganda’s National Referral Hospital Mulago has had its water supply disconnected by National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NWSC) over unpaid bills amounting to over shs.6bn. This has left many patients stranded and there are concerns that this might cause more health hazards.

What should be done to rectify this?

Poll Question

The world will celebrate International Women’s Day this Saturday 8th March 2014. It is a day the world reflects on the progress of women towards social, political and economic development.

Do you think women have achievements that are worth celebrating? Is Women’s Day relevant anyway?

President Museveni Presides over the 1st Annual COMESA Innovation Awards



Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni has presided over the first Annual COMESA Innovations Awards. This was on 26th February 2014 at the opening ceremony of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Summit of Heads of State and Governments that was held in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The summit was attended by several Heads of State and Governments and dignitaries from COMESA member states. President Museveni presided over the Innovations Awards in his capacity as the outgoing Chairperson of COMESA before officially handing over to the incoming Chairperson, DRC President Joseph Kabila.

The Chairperson of COMESA Innovation Council, Professor Venansius Baryamureeba, also Vice Chancellor UTAMU, presented the awardees during the ceremony. Baryamureeba highlighted that COMESA Innovations Awards were aimed at recognizing and celebrating individuals, groups of individuals, institutions, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that have utilised science, technology and innovation to steer the regional integration agenda. He informed the Heads of State and Government that the selection criteria put a lot of emphasis on innovations that had potential to be replicated across the COMESA member states.

“The criteria also put into consideration the impact of the innovations on socio-economic transformation and empowerment especially to the rural communities that comprise the majority of the people within COMESA member states,” Baryamureeba pointed out. He assured the COMESA delegates that the awards evaluation process was fair and transparent and participants were considered from all COMESA member countries. “77 submissions were received, 20 were not responsive to the call and 57 were evaluated. Of the 57, 10 were selected on merit,” Baryamureeba clarified.

The COMESA Innovations Awards saw individuals, groups of individuals, SMEs and institutions from Egypt, Kenya, Zambia, Mauritius, Rwanda and Uganda scoop precious awards.

Professor Baryamureeba also urged the Delegates at the COMESA Summit to encourage participation of their own countries, particularly to the call for proposals for the 2nd Annual COMESA Innovation Awards, which will come out later this year.

Baryamureeba has been chairing the COMESA Innovations Council since February 2013. The Council’s primary responsibility is to provide advice to COMESA Member States relating to existing and new knowledge and innovations and best ways of applying knowledge and innovations in different Member States.

This year’s COMESA Summit was held under the theme ‘Consolidating intra- COMESA Trade Through Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development’.

Poll Question

This week, UTAMU News team is pleased to introduce ‘poll question forum’. Every Week, we shall ask you, our dear reader to share with us your views on a particular topic. This forum is intended to engage our readers to participate in our newsletter.

This week, we felt concerned about reports that men especially bodaboda cyclists are undressing ladies in public lately. They say government has passed a law that bans miniskirts and so ladies should not be sighted anywhere in public wearing miniskirts. The anti- pornography law that President Museveni assented to on 6th February 2014 outlaws 'provocative' dressing, pornographic media content among others. It also prescribes penalties for publishers, broadcasters and internet café operators as well as anything intended to cause sexual excitement or any indecent act or behavior that corrupt morals.

What's your take on recent reports that men are harassing ladies by stripping them naked in public allegedly because they are wearing skimpy clothes?

  • Ass. Prof. Dr. Rehema Baguma,
    Director Academic Affairs UTAMU

    "I - think the culprits are idle and disorderly. They should be severely punished for engaging in this unbecoming act. If this is not quickly addressed, the strides we have made in gender equality will be affected. I am glad government has come out to correct the misinterpretation of the law."
  • Seth Muhairwe,
    Lecturer, UTAMU
    -
    "That is a barbaric and uncouth behavior that we shouldn’t be witnessing in the 21st century".
  • Linda Alum,
    Administrative Assistant UTAMU
    -
    "That is disrespect and abuse of human rights. The bill doesn’t mention any where that ladies should not wear miniskirts."
  • Ernest Mwebaze,
    Manager Quality Assurance UTAMU

    - "This calls for some sort of empathy; men should look at and treat women as if they were their mothers or sisters. Women too should dress as if they were going to meet their father, brother, pastor or priest".
  • Mary Nantumbwe,
    Administrative Assistant
    -
    "I am very bitter about this whole issue. How on earth can people think that they have rights to undress others? The minister and law enforcement bodies should act as soon as possible to get those involved punished for engaging in uncivilized acts".
  • Paulo Hyuha,
    Assistant Librian UTAMU
    -
    "This is a good law but there is need to sensitize masses about the law and what it actually entails".
  • Irene Nsangi, Accountant -
    "The law is being misinterpreted. The ones engaging in this barbaric act are idle and disorderly. Instead of us focusing on bigger issues in Uganda like lack of drugs in government hospitals, corruption, fixing roads and others, people are busy undressing others. It’s so absurd!"
  • Prossy Katumba,
    PhD Student
    -
    "Clothes are meant to cover bodies of human beings. When you undress someone without their consent, you not only disgrace them but also dehumanize them. I think this is unacceptable. However, Christian values teach us to dress modestly to avoid drawing negative attention. We need to capture the essence of modesty to avoid God’s judgment".
  • Mary Komuntale,
    PhD student.
    -
    "Undressing women in public is so disgusting. Everyone doing it should be arrested and charged with molesting or cases related to rape. Though at times, those that are victims really deserve to be undressed".
    .
  • Amos Karugaba,
    student, BSCS.
    -
    "Undressing women in public won’t solve anything. Masses should be sensitized on the dangers of indecent dressing"
  • Phillip Nayebare,
    student BIST.
    -
    "This is a form of injustice that should be addressed with immediate effect. Civilians are not law enforcers. Let police arrest those they find indecently dressed and take them to courts of law for judgment."
  • Kenneth Twesigye,
    Student BIST
    -
    "It’s mainly bodaboda men that are taking advantage of their ignorance about the law to undress ladies. There should be a medium of intelligence to report such hooligans."
  • Joshua Asiimwe,
    Student BIST
    -
    "This is so disrespectful of men. This unbecoming behavior deserves severe punishment."

Meet Uganda’s Extraordinary Professor


Prof. Baryamureeba
Prof. Baryamureeba is the founding Vice Chancellor of UTAMU. He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science, M.Sc. in Computer Science, M.Sc. (Mathematics)-Coursework, Post Graduate Diploma in Analysing Linear Programming Models and B.Sc. (Hons) among other qualifications. He previously served at Makerere University as Vice Chancellor, Dean of the Faculty of Computing and IT and Director of the Institute of Computer Science.

At his young age, Baryamureeba, a distinguished academic, researcher, leader and manager, has won several awards both at National and International levels. Some of his most recent awards include the golden jubilee award from Uganda’s President Museveni, Award for Outstanding Contribution to Education at the Africa-India Partnership Summit Le Matinal, Educational Excellence Awards held in Mauritius and the 'Top ICT Academic' Award in Africa. Others are the 'TWAS-ROSSA award' for Building Scientific Institutions for the African Region and the 'Amity Global Academic Excellence Award'. Prof. Baryamureeba was also included in the 'Top 100 Professionals' by the International Biographical Centre in recognition of his significant contribution in the area of ICT.

Thanks to technology, UTAMU News caught up with Prof. Baryamureeba for an interview even when he was in Kinshasha, DRC, where he was attending the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Policy Organs Meeting. Baryamureeba happens to be the Chairperson of the COMESA Innovations Committee. Below is the full interview:

QN: You have achieved so much at such a tender age; what is your driving force?

The desire to excel and leave an indelible mark in all positions I have held. Another thing that drives me is the desire to offer selfless service for the betterment of mankind.

QN: You have quite a big task as a Vice Chancellor of a fast growing University like UTAMU; how do you intend to live up to the challenge?

The time any institution ceases to have challenges is the moment it stops to innovate and see opportunities. On the issue of staff retention, UTAMU has put in place favorable staff packages. On the issue of attracting PhD holders, this has been addressed through provision of an all round academic environment including research environment. UTAMU in collaboration with Mbarara University is engaged in training the next generation of PhD holders. UTAMU has an aggressive research agenda and is currently seeking partnerships with governments, multi national companies and organizations, research institutions and agencies to raise funds for research and increase the research output from UTAMU. UTAMU has put in place the right staff for the right positions and challenges can be handled whenever they arise.

QN: Where do you see UTAMU in the next five years?

In the next three years, UTAMU shall be the best University in Uganda in the area of Technology and Management (T&M). In the next five years, UTAMU shall be the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) of Africa. As a result it shall be one stop centre for T&M training, research and innovation.

QN: You are one of the few Vice Chancellors in Uganda who participates in teaching and supervising of students. In fact UTAMU is the only university in Uganda where high profile professors like you engage in these activities especially at undergraduate level. Why?

First of all, as Professor I have to remain up to date through teaching and undertaking research and innovation. Secondly, the best Professors need to give priority to UTAMU students especially the 1st year students so that they get grounded right from the start. Any serious institutions has to deploy their best staff to teach students early enough in their career. So I enjoy mentoring young people and also sharing with them my life experiences. Professors are better placed to orientate students who are fresh from high school in discipline specific matters to guide their career paths.

QN: There is no doubt that the UTAMU graduate will be a unique breed. How will you ensure that this breed does not suffer from unemployment just like other graduates today?

By the time UTAMU students graduate, many of them will be already having their own ongoing incubation projects / business which they can continue with after University. But secondly and most importantly, any one who graduates from UTAMU must have skills to enable this person perform in the world of work but also be able to run his / her business if need be.

QN: Before Joining UTAMU as Vice Chancellor, you were Vice Chancellor of Makerere University. What do consider your best moment at Makerere University?

The best moment at Makerere University was on 6th September 2012 when I handed over the office of the Vice Chancellor to Prof. John Ddumba Sentamu. That marked the climax of my service to Makerere University.

QN: What do you consider your turning moment in life?

7th September 2012 was my turning point. This is day when my colleagues and I announced the opening of UTAMU. Today, UTAMU employs more than 100 Ugandans. Like I have already mentioned, UTAMU will enable me achieve what I could not achieve at Makerere University. I am optimistic that UTAMU will be the MIT of Africa in the next five years.

QN: Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand; Proverbs 19:21. So I will wait unto the Lord to guide and direct me. As of now, I am whole heartedly focused on serving UTAMU for the next five years.

QN: What’s your philosophy in life?

My philosophy in life is to empower those around me and to offer service above self for the good of man kind.

QN: What has enabled you to be successful in the different positions you have held?

Several factors have contributed but key among them include: being able to network, building competent teams, delegation, hard work, living in the present and never quitting any responsibility.

Thank You M7 for Signing the Anti-Gay Bill

Amidst western pressure and threats that Uganda could face serious financial risks, the President of the Republic of Uganda, President Yoweri K Museveni took an independent decision and signed the anti- homosexuality bill on Monday 24th February 2014.

With all due respect, I want to express my sincere gratitude to President Museveni for having made a courageous step towards protecting Ugandan values and culture. This newly enacted bill is surely the perfect gift he has given Ugandans since this year began.

While it might be true that Uganda might suffer grave financial consequences due to this law, I want to believe that I, just like majority of Ugandans are ready to dance to the music as long as our cultures and values are preserved. Before signing the bill, Museveni clearly stressed that Uganda is a rich country that does not need aid, because aid is in itself a problem. He strongly pointed out that Uganda is a no- go- zone area for homos.


President Museveni signs the Anti-Homosexuality Bill
as Health Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda looks on.

The US President Barack Obama warned Uganda on criminalizing homosexuality, saying it would strain the relationship between Uganda and USA. “The Anti-Homosexuality Bill in Uganda, once law, will be more than an affront and a danger to the gay community in Uganda. It will be a step backward for all Ugandans and reflect poorly on Uganda's commitment to protecting the human rights of its people. It will mark a serious setback for all those around the world who share a commitment to freedom, justice and equal rights”, Obama in a statement.

Sweden has also warned that this law could represent a financial risk for Uganda‘s economy and more other countries are expected to withdraw support from Uganda.

Amidst all these, the Anti-gays activists in Uganda have mobilised Ugandans to join in a peaceful match for a thanksgiving celebration to praise God for government assenting to the Anti-Homosexuality Bill into law.

The “United Against Homosexuality” activists intend to show solidarity with the stakeholders who worked towards the enactment of the law in a thanks giving ceremony at Kololo Airstrip come 4th March 2014.

Uganda is a country that is strongly built on Christian principles and condoning acts as these contradicts our beliefs.

My only prayer is that we all get up in arms and collectively fight all the vices in our country like corruption, embezzlement, robbery and murder among others.  FOR GOD AND MY COUNTRY!!!

Costly Graduation Party; Is It Really Worth it?

Recently, I attended a graduation ceremony of my cousin who had finished her course at Kyambogo University. There was a lot of merry making; we were treated to a sumptuous dinner, a variety of drinks, soothing music, photo moments, speeches, name it. We had such a pleasant moment with family, friends and relatives.

An ordinary Ugandan knows that nothing today comes for free. What we enjoyed that day definitely cost the organizers some good amount of money. I wouldn’t love to go into the nitty-gritty of how much they spent on each item but I want to focus my discussion on whether it is worthwhile to spend a lot of money on a graduation ceremony, especially with the reality of unemployment after university!

 Many will argue that academic journeys are not always straight paths in life. Some struggle to obtain tuition fees, others lose their parents or guardians along the way, some get retakes. It’s generally not an easy journey for many. So, when they graduate, they feel they should celebrate the milestone. And I do agree with that. The problem is that we tend to spend way too much money celebrating the academic achievement.

According to a report by a report by Africa Development Bank, youth unemployment in Uganda could be as high as 83% and is also believed to be the highest in Africa. The high number of unemployed youths has forced young graduates to take on risky lives to manage the high cost of living. Recent media reports highlighted that several Ugandan youth have been lured into prostitution, drug trafficking and other crimes because of this.

While universities in Uganda release about 40,000 graduates annually, only 8000 of these can be absorbed into formal employment. Worse still, the Ugandan education system seems to concentrate to training job seekers and not creators.


Students celebrate on their graduation day.

What if the money intended for that sumptuous celebration was given to the graduate to create some employment? May be then, my cousin would have saved herself the hustle of having to walk the streets in search of employment. What if she fails to find employment in the short term? How viable would it be for my uncle who had to spend so much money including taking credit to celebrate his daughter’s achievement?

We must appreciate that times have changed. We need to change our attitudes towards ‘finishing school and looking for jobs’. That money you intend to spend on a graduation party might be enough to offset a small income generating project that could change your life forever.

Drake Challenges Students to Set Realistic Goals

The Manager for Engagement, Research and Innovations, Mr. Drake P. Mirembe has urged students to set realistic and measurable goals that will facilitate them not only to live purpose-driven lives but also be triumphant.

He made the remarks during the Career Guidance Talk on Tuesday 25th February 2014 at UTAMU Resource Centre in Bugolobi.

Mirembe noted that goals enable people to visualize their future and stimulate them to work hard to achieve their aspirations in life. “If you have no goals in life, you are likely to live a mediocre life. The goals we set give us a sense of direction to get where we want to be someday,” he highlighted.

Mirembe who categorized goals into immediate, short term and long term also encouraged students to always write down their goals for it is a sign of commitment and accountability.  “You must write your goals somewhere, make them visible and share them with family and friends,” he added.

He however challenged students to make measurable, realistic and specific goals to avoid frustration.

Mirembe also emphasized that setting goals enables people to be focused in life, perform better, live happier lives and above all boost their self esteem.

The seminar was attended by students and a cross section of UTAMU staff. Career guidance seminar is one of UTAMU’s initiatives aimed at inspiring and motivating students to make wise career choices and informed decisions in life.

Prof. Baryamureeba Urges CEOs to Embrace to Technology

The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Venansius Baryamureeba has advised the business community to comprehend the key goals of employing  technology  in their businesses to avoid incurring costs that do not provide desired returns.

He was delivering a key note address on a topic ‘Leveraging Technology in Business Growth’ during the Chief Executive Officers’ Apprenticeship Club 2014 at Serena Hotel in Kampala on 22nd February 2014.

Baryamureeba highlighted that while technology enables business proprietors to create flexible and actionable processes that ease work, they should be careful not to merely spend money on technology but ensure that it generates profits.

“Technology in business should be a tool meant to generate value by enhancing productivity, reducing cost, increasing competitive advantage and improving supplier-customer relationships”, he stressed.

Baryamureeba noted that technology in business processes is vital in creating environments, solutions and opportunities for enterprises to quickly meet customers’ and stakeholders’ requirements while maintaining a sustainable business environment.

He encouraged business owners and entrepreneurs to outsource latest technology where applicable, focus on their core functions and also train their staff in order to obtain value for money.

The CEO Apprenticeship Club is a premier Top Leadership Coaching Institute in Uganda which provides a for a and a systematic approach to generating a futuristic agenda through collaborative effort. It has over 100 executive Coaches from 50 Multi-National, Governments and other large corporations.

Baryamureeba, a Professor of Computer Science was called to address the CEOs because of his unrivalled expertise in Business Management and ICT.  As a distinguished academic, researcher, leader, and manager, he has won several awards at both national and international levels.

Basheka Participates in National Procurement Policy Formulation

The Dean, School of Business and Management, Prof. Benon C. Basheka has been part of the group that was reviewing the first draft of the National Public Sector Procurement Policy for government of Uganda. This was during a 2- day Focus Group Retreat was held from 20th to 22nd February 2014 at Speke Resort Munyonyo.

Basheka was identified as one of the key stakeholders in the field of public sector procurement given the experience and expertise he has accrued in the field over the years.

The retreat was aimed at generating ideas that will be significant in formulating a National Public Sector Procurement Policy for Uganda that will streamline the management of the procurement function in the country.

At a time when public procurement is becoming a subject of debate at all levels in government, Basheka observed that UTAMU’s participation in this retreat unveils what UTAMU human resource can offer to government agenda.

“The continuous involvement of UTAMU human resources in such initiatives demonstrates the trust key policy makers have in formidable human resource capacities at UTAMU”, Basheka emphasized.

He further stressed that this involvement directly benefits UTAMU academic programmes adding that it enriches the university’s curriculum through a blend of theory and the practical work.

“Undergraduate courses at UTAMU like Bachelor of Procurement and Supply Chain Management and Bachelor of Public Administration and Management were designed from UTAMU’s high level involvement in such fora. The doctoral programmes also benefit from such initiatives because research themes for doctoral work have to be in tandem with the practical challenges of government efficiency”, Basheka highlighted.

In November last year, Basheka won the Academic and Professional Research Award in recognition for his excellent record of publications and scholarship in the procurement discipline in the country. He was chosen for the award because of his great contribution to procurement knowledge through journals, publications and scholarly articles.

Barya in DRC for COMESA Meeting

UTAMU Vice Chancellor, Prof. Venansuis Baryamureeba has been away in Kinshasha, Democratic Republic of Congo attending a Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Policy Organs Meeting together with several dignitaries from COMESA member states.

The meeting was held under the theme ‘Consolidating intra- COMESA Trade Through Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development’. In his capacity as Chairperson of COMESA Innovations Council, Prof. Baryamureeba had an opportunity to address various COMESA heads of state, including Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni.

Baryamureeba has been chairing the COMESA Innovations Council since last year. The Council’s primary responsibility is to provide advice to COMESA Member States relating to existing and new knowledge and innovations and best ways of applying knowledge and innovations in different Member States.

DAA Tips Students on Mid-Semester Assessment Tests

The Director for Academic Affairs Assoc. Prof. Dr. Rehema Baguma has called upon students to prepare early enough for the Continuous Assessment 3 (Mid-Semester Assessment) that is due on is 28th March 2014.

According to Baguma, the UTAMU almanac decrees that students partake of various assessments in a semester. However, unlike other continuous assessments which can be done online, mid-semester assessment 3 is a face to face test where all UTAMU students are expected to appear physically at campus to engage in this activity.

"Continuous assessment 3 is an evaluation tool aimed at tracking students’ progress and knowledge expectations of their courses; I encourage all students to read extensively and invest more study time to be able to excel in this compulsory assessment," Baguma emphasised.

As per the UTAMU almanac, continuous assessments contribute 30% to the final score of any given course semester marks, while the final exams contribute 70%.

Where is He?

You might have seen less of UTAMU’s Director for ICT and Library Services, Dr. Johnson Mwebaze this week.This is because he has been representing UTAMU at the Regional training in learner-centred pedagogy skills for policy influencers.

The training was aimed at facilitating participants with learner-centred training approaches.

The Dean, School of Computing and Engineering at UTAMU, Assoc. Prof. Dr. John Ngubiri noted that UTAMU’s participation in this regional training further enhanced the skills of the University’s human resource.

Note from the Editor

Greetings!

I know the smile in my picture says it all. But I will still tell you how much I love writing this love note to you our dear readers.

Today, I bring you yet another issue of good news, which I believe you will enjoy. You will notice it has a few changes. The interesting thing is that YOU actually made these changes. Yes, you did. Through the emails you sent to us. I meant it when I said we care about you and I would do anything for you if you wrote to us! This is simply because you are our special people.

As always, this week had lots of exciting activities at UTAMU. The Jua kali graduation was an activity filled with innovation and charisma. I don’t know about you but for me, watching less educated Ugandan youths take a step to get to greater heights was a thrilling moment. As I interacted with this less known group in Uganda’s education structure, I suddenly got hope that with UTAMU, we will have no unemployment in Uganda in a few years from now. Are you wondering how this can happen? Go on, read this newsletter and you will know why I jumped to this conclusion. The good thing about reading is that you will find much more.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you UTAMU News, Issue 1, Volume 24. Enjoy it and remember to write back to us on .

With compliments

Rebecca Pearl Tumwebaze

Meetings Hinder Performance

Meetings are a popular phenomena in our settings; be it school, work, family, name it. They are a time and avenue for people to meet, chat, discuss and brainstorm.

In our organizations today, meetings account for over 60% of people at managerial level in organizations. But are they always efficient?

The notion of professional meetings dates way back in 1250-1300. Today meetings are highly opined and it is through them that major decisions are made in organizations. However, according to one Bain survey, 85% of executives surveyed are dissatisfied with the effectiveness and efficiency of the meetings in their companies.

Management teams spend over half of their time in meetings. Alarming statistics also show that in United States, 11 million meetings are held every day among which executives attend 65% of them per month. 50% of meeting time is wasted. This is equivalent to a day of wasted time per employee in every week.

In these meetings, the conversations wind away clear action items and completion deadlines. And in this sense, ideas, decisions and any relevant information from the meeting get lost on the simple notebooks.

It is absurd that meetings have turned into habits without drawn objectives and purposes. Meetings without measurable outcomes and specific decisions are bound to achieve nothing. Lack of defined agenda and stated goals are some of the issues that make meetings meaningless.

I am not against the idea of holding meetings but surely constant meetings are no longer evangelists of quality assurance and improvement of institutions.

I wish Ugandans can borrow a leaf from this and minimize the time they spend in meetings so as to be productive and efficient at their places of work. Meetings are necessary, but they should not be over held. How will you deliver when you spend most of your time attending meetings?

Prostitution Violates Our Culture

 I want to commend State Minister of Ethics and Integrity, Right Reverend Father Simon Lokodo for having championed a cause of building a morally upright Uganda. He is the brain behind the new anti-pornography bill that was signed into law by President Museveni earlier this week.

While I don’t intend to discuss about this law today, my topic of interest is prostitution. Prostitution in Uganda is an illegal and despicable act.

Unfortunately many young people continue to take on the vice though in hiding. For most of prostitutes, their day lives are normal. However as darkness sets in, all hell breaks loose as they take on their controversial work stations. No wonder it is such an evil act that it is mainly left for the night.

It is disastrous that there is a cross section of Ugandans who think that prostitution should be legalized since it can be profitable business. Absurd indeed!

On Monday 17th February 2014, Red Pepper published the story about a Ugandan singer commonly known as Queen Florence who was arrested in Malaysia and sentenced to three months in jail for allegedly engaging in prostitution. To me it was indeed a blow to my fellow youths because public figures and celebrities like musicians have largely become our role models!

In recent times, prostitution has annoyingly become popular even amongst university students. As a student, I urge my colleagues to desist from this evil. How can your parents spend their hard earned money educating you for close to twenty years and because you cannot find a job, your instinct tells you that the only option left is to sell your body to get money?

We must understand that money can be made in more descent ways than practicing prostitution. Our cultural values as Uganda need to be preserved and we should not let such vices to flourish.

With all the demerits of this vice like catching HIV/ AIDS and STDS, we cannot sit back and watch as this generation takes on prostitution in full swing. The Bible clearly tells us that our bodies are God’s temples and so they must be kept holy.

Rev. Fr. Lokodo’s bill thus can’t have come at a better time. According to the good reverend, prostitution can only cease to exist if we created situations where its demand and supply would just not arise. I will not hesitate to support his cause because prostitution should be condemned and whoever is caught in the act should be punished.

Prostitution has been rated as one of the most lucrative businesses in Uganda and several other countries. Today, ‘sex trafficking,’ a term used to refer to international prostitution is one the most well-paying ventures in the world. The Industry is worth 10 billion US dollars according to a student coalition, One Voice.

Malaysia, Indonesia and India are some of the countries where this business is more pronounced.

Whatever the circumstances, my prayer is that this vice should never be legalized in the Pearl of Africa. I condemn it in the strongest terms possible.

Together, let us stand against prostitution!  

UTAMU & Saarland University to Pilot Evaluation Online Programme

By Helen Mwiza

UTAMU Vice Chancellor Prof. Venansius Baryamureeba and the Dean, School of Business and Management, Prof. Benon C. Basheka have met a German-Ugandan Development Cooperation (GIZ) delegation to deliberate on a partnership that will see Saarland University in Germany, UTAMU and Makerere as well as other Universities offer an online Evaluation programme.

Pennarz Johanna and Innocent Nyasuna from Saarland University together with UTAMU dons met on 19th February 2014 at UTAMU Head office at Twed Towers and their discussion was focused on how best they could formulate and test modules for a blended -learning online course on evaluation.


UTAMU dons share a light moment with the Germany delegates

Prof. Baryamureeba revealed that a partnership with these institutions would increase the number of practitioners in the field of Evaluation through offering high quality education.

On the implementation aspect, the module be conducted in three phases; first, a face to face kick off to introduce participants to the blended learning-format and requirements, followed by thematic and administrative e-tutoring to be carried out by a German national and Ugandan evaluation expert respectively and the module ends with another face-to-face training to offer participants a deeper understanding of the course ahead of the final exam.

UTAMU has been tasked with developing and implementing one module to suit the specific requirements and settings in Uganda. The University will also determine who is legible, carry out the selection process and offer face to face interactions given that the course will be conducted online.

Baryamureeba added that this initiative will impart knowledge and skills in different types of evaluation designs, prompt questions on how to evaluate interventions and the types of interventions that will be evaluated using different designs as well as the impact. “Once the pilot project is successful, it will set the foundation for a Master of evaluation programme,” he disclosed.

Given that the virtual world is an inherent part of on-the job training in companies, ministries and some programmes of universities and schools, the course will combine face to face classroom blended learning.

Prof. Basheka disclosed that UTAMU had already embarked on activities which will contribute to finalizing pilot testing 'Evaluation Design’, one of the seven modules that will aid this project with a possible extension to the first half of 2015.

Rotaracts Tipped to Impact Society Positively


Officials from various Rotary Clubs in Kampala pose for a group photo.

Rotaracts at UTAMU have been urged to identify some of the activities they can engage in to impact society positively.

UTAMU Rotaracts were hosting officials from various Rotary Clubs during their weekly fellowship at UTAMU on 18th February 2014.

While sharing his experience with the Rotary Club, the District Youth Chair for Uganda and Tanzania, Dr. Ronald S. Kawaddwa told Rotaracts that Rotary is not about talking but rather being involved in community activities.

“Rotary teaches us to do simple things that can change lives. Learn to be kind, share with those around you and help those in need. This is what the spirit of Rotary is all about”, Kawaddwa disclosed.

He encouraged Rotaracts to always attend fellowships with other Rotarians and Rotaracts to be able meet people that will shape their talents, professions and perspectives. “Rotary opens up opportunities for you to meet influential people who will inspire you and shape your ideas”, Kawadi further revealed.

The Rotaract Club of UTAMU which was launched last year currently has 15 members who fellowship every Tuesday at UTAMU Resource Centre. They have been involved in a series of community activities including cleaning Up Kiswa and the neighboring areas as well as the Car wash Exercise at UTAMU.


UTAMU Rotaracts pose with officials from various Rotary Clubs in Kampala.


A Rotarian shares his contact with an UTAMU Rotaract student.


Rotaracts interact with Rotarians after the fellowship.

I Would Be Frustrated If It Were Not For My Supervisors

In our series of doctoral experiences of the MUST-UTAMU PhD students, Geoffrey Bwireh, shares with us how his journey has been. He holds a Diploma in Procurement and Supply Management (CIPS-UK), a Bachelor’s Degree in Procurement and Logistics Management and a Master’s degree in Management Studies from Uganda Management Institute (UMI).  Geoffrey is a Lecturer in the Department of Procurement & Marketing at Mbarara University of Science and Technology. He has experience in lecturing, community training and business management. Meet this young, enthusiastic and charismatic doctoral scholar.

Why did you enroll for a PhD programme?

I value multitasking, freedom and flexibility. I am an enthusiastic, optimistic, and upbeat person who thrives to work in an environment with great morale. The world today is so dynamic that we cannot afford to stay in our comfort zones. We must be innovative and yearn to acquire more skills each new day. This is one of the reasons I enrolled for a PhD course. The other one is that I am an academician with Mbarara University of Science and Technology and acquiring a PhD will unquestionably resonate well with my career goals.

How has your journey been so far?

It has been challenging and interesting at the same time. So far, so good. It’s worth the effort. I would be frustrated if it were not for my supervisors. They have been very supportive and inspiring! I know it’s not easy but I am greatly convinced that I can make it.

Is there anything special about the MUST-UTAMU PhD Programme?

I have passion for creativity and innovation and MUST-UTAMU PhD Programme is a true reflection of this. Both MUST and UTAMU have something in common, technology and management professionals. With these on board, we shall be mentored to become more productive and our skills will definitely make Uganda a better place.

They say PhD courses are not for the fainthearted? What has kept you going?
I have always wanted to make a positive impact in the lives of others, and this programme provides me with an excellent opportunity to achieve my dream. It is this dream that keeps me going. Also my research topic: ‘Agribusiness Initiatives and Sustainable Rural Livelihood Uganda’s Experience’. Is an interesting topic; it is topical and relevant to the needs of the Ugandan economy.

Where do you see yourself in the next four years?

I will be through with this programme and actively engage in action-based research that aims at finding workable solutions to the problems that have undermined Africa’s full realization of her potential.

What lessons has this PhD course taught you about life?

One stops learning only when they die. Learning is a continuous process and we must always seek for knowledge and appreciate diversity of humankind.

How have managed you managed to juggle this course, work, family alongside other responsibilities?

Like I said, it’s both challenging and interesting. Since I registered as a PhD student, I have greatly reduced on my engagements in abrupt work engagements outside my formal known employment. Also my family, workmates and friends have learnt that I am now a student and I will no longer be so available like I was before. But technology has facilitated me to remain in touch with my loved ones. There are so many communication channels today that we have no excuse not to keep in touch with family and friends.

Any message to your fellow doctoral scholars?

I urge them to remain zealous like they were when they received their admission letters to this program. Those who do extraordinary things have the same blood flowing in their veins just like ours.  We only need to do extra ordinary things to achieve this goal. Good luck colleagues.

Trade Ministry Lauds UTAMU on ‘Jua Kali’ Training



The Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives, Hon. Amelia Kyambadde, has lauded UTAMU for its efforts in providing innovative practical skills training to youths in Uganda.

This was revealed by Dr. Joshua Mutambi, the Commissioner ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives during the graduation ceremony of ‘Jua Kali’ youths who were awarded with certificates in Business Development at UTAMU Resource Centre on Thursday 20th February 2014.

 Dr. Mutambi represented Hon. Amelia Kyambadde who was invited as chief guest at the graduation ceremony. He congratulated UTAMU upon taking the courageous step of working with this group of people.

 “Jua Kalis have been ignored when it comes to higher education; yet they have great innovations like we tend to see when we go down town to Katwe; I thank UTAMU for bringing them into the classroom,” He pointed out.

Jua Kali’ is a term used to describe people who are highly technical and talented but lack soft skills. Over the last one year, UTAMU has been instrumental in offering specialized training to this group of people in disciplines of communication, marketing, management and ICT.

Mutambi further revealed that the 'Jua Kalis' would now be able to apply the knowledge and skills acquired at UTAMU to take on the East African common market. He urged them to do business differently, innovatively and skillfully to be able to out-compete other players in the region.

At the ceremony, UTAMU Vice Chancellor, Prof. Venansuis Baryamureeba congratulated the 'Jua Kalis' and urged government to support innovative initiatives because they have the potential to combat the unemployment problem in Uganda.

“Education is not about acquiring qualifications. It’s about being innovative and applying the skills one has acquired at any institution to change the world around them”, Baryamureeba highlighted.

The ceremony was graced by officials from the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives; Uganda Small Scale Industries Association; Uganda Technicians and Information Technology Association; UTAMU and members of the press. It was concluded with an exhibition by the graduates who showcased various innovations in the fields of renewable energy, ICT and business cost efficiency.


Dr. Mutambi, Prof. Barya pose with the UTITA gradunds after the ceremony

Dr. Joshua Mutambi reading out the graduands' certificates

Dr. Mutambi addressing the graduands