The country of Uganda has changed the academic year so that students can resume studies as a second term of the year instead of a third term:

It would have helped the students future academic studies if the teachers could accredit the students with normal grades according to their normal life capabilities: They seem to have fought well with their lives in this world wide pandemic of COVID19:

 

Written by URN

 

10 September, 2020

 

The Uganda Education minister M/s Janet Kataha Museveni

 

Ugandan education authorities have revised the academic year schedule to allow students to report for the second term of school this month, as part of the phased reopening of educational institutions across the country.

 

The academic year was prematurely cut short on March 18, 2020, as a precautionary measure to control the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). As a result, over 15 million learners who are enrolled in schools at different education levels have been at home since the closedown.

Around May, the government proposed to open up for candidate classes, however, the plan had not materialized to date with some voices asking the government to declare 2020 a dead year for education. Now, sources at the Education ministry have intimated that the academic year clock will be rewound to second term.  

Around this time of the year, in the normal academic year schedule, students would be reporting for the third term - with candidates preparing for examinations which would begin around October. But, there has been a question of how learners would compensate for the second term given the fact that the government had failed to put up a feasible continuous learning program during the lockdown.  

“Looking at the timeline it was nearly impossible for students to completely cover the syllabus and write their exams this year. It has been agreed upon that as students go back, the clock should be rewound to the second term,” a source told URN.

According to a letter recently written by the minister of Education Janet Kataha Museveni to Finance minister Matia Kasaija seeking the release of capitation grants to schools, the candidate classes are bound to report for the second term on September 20, this year. However, sources add that after a few weeks, more classes will also report to school. 

“It will be done in phases. Two or three weeks after candidates have reported, the ministry will assess the situation and if everything is fine, a second lot will be added, another one will also follow up. In the end, all students will be at school,” the source adds. 

Tentatively, the ministry plans that the second term will end around mid-December and in late January or early February, the third term will kick-off. Candidates are then expected to write their final exams around March or April. Going forward, the academic year will be slowly harmonized to fit into the calendar year.

 

What Ugandan Schools look like during the lockdown  of COVID19 world wide.

  

"When schools reopen, the co-curricular activities will be temporarily suspended so that teachers concentrate on reintegrating learners into the school system, carry out remedial work and ensure that the syllabus is covered. There will be no examinations at the end of the second term," the source said.

Usually, the registration for national examinations at primary, O' and A'levels starts in April ending in May with an extra month provided for latecomers. After registration, there are four to five months before learners eventually write their examinations. Registration normally coincides with candidates' application for placements in schools and institutions where they wish to be admitted for the next level of education. However, their entire process had been frozen.

Asked about how they intended to handle the examination process within the available situation, Dan Odongo the Uganda National Examinations Board (UNEB) executive secretary noted that they are just waiting for an official communication on the reopening so that they lay out their plan.     

If nothing has changed, the reopening will soon be declared by the president and thereafter the ministry will officially adopt a strategy that will enable them to effectively implement the specific standard operating procedures (SOPs) for phased reopening. 

 

One of the Uganda schools locked up for over 8 full months without the kids going to normal schooling.

 

In one of the working documents recently shared, the ministry of Education suggested enforcing reviews in the daily school routines to provide for shorter and core curriculum school days with classes scheduled between 8 am and end at 1:30 pm.  

However, a school with huge candidate classes that cannot be accommodated in the available time-space, it was planned to have options of teaching either in shifts or an alternate day attendance schedule. Furthermore, all schools that reopen for candidates-only, according to the document, would operate as day or boarding but not both.    

The ministry had also developed SOPs which include; availability of WASH facilities, the two-meter distance between learners, reducing the number of learners to at least 10 to 15 students in a standard classroom for primary and secondary and tertiary institutions and ensuring good ventilation.    

Other SOPs include; regular disinfection, restricted community access, supervising break periods, and scattered release of students for breaks, lunch, and departures to limit interaction. But, sources also indicate that there are several reviews regarding the SOPs which will also be communicated after the awaited pronouncement.
 
Several headteachers say that the currently stipulated SOPs may be difficult to implement. Richard Abura, headteacher Nakasero primary school notes that with the resources at their disposal, it will be difficult to take on the entire school community.    

Available documents indicate that besides the normal school budget, the ministry requires Shs 1.67 billion to facilitate the reopening for candidates and Shs 97.6 billion in a scenario that requires all students to report to their respective schools. The said funds are to help implement the SOPs in full to prepare schools for reopening.  

 

Even amid the COVID-19 resurgence, governments around the world have started to slowly reopen schools as health experts say it’s vital for children to resume education. In most countries like the United Kingdom, there are operating on minimal procedures limited to physical distancing, wearing face masks, and sanitizing. However, some teachers’ unions have voiced concerns about the safety of staff and children as infection rates continue to rise. 

Different surveys indicate that school closures have had negative effects on the education and wellbeing of many children and teenagers, while parents are struggling to ensure that their children get some form of learning during the lockdown. 

 

Nb 

Comments

Akao 

 

Give us a break! Uganda does not have discipline to send children to school and contain the virus. There is a lot to consider, transportation, overcrowded classes, hygiene.
If they even failed to provide beans to people living in Kampala. Copy and paste does not work in every situation.
I am sure they have heard that other countries are sending children to school and they want to do the same. In March they closed school's because other countries did even though there was no covid in Uganda.
They should have just closedon't the border then. Wait until the vaccine comes which is not too long now
 
Akao you have a point. In the lockdown, children have been learning so well about anything as normal human being.
Interesting that for Uganda as a poor country children of the poor have been working 24 hours for 7 days for their parents to earn income and to pay taxes.
 
 
As living like healthy African children, working and earning a living, is it not enough experience and study to deserve a study certificate for life?

It is unfortunate that as these enforced school studies start again many poor children will stay at home. Their financial sponsors who too have been under financial lockdown do not have the school fees to say the least!
 

Worse still for the poor African school children in Uganda, if the World Bank put up an educational grant for them to get to school scott free, one doubts if the greedy politicians in this country would utilize it effectively!
 
There goes the corruption in President Museveni's long serving government in Uganda.
 
 

If any parent cannot thank their children for managing to get through this terrible COVID19 pandemic, well at least the statistics can show everything.
Because not many children in the world have suffered death because of COVID19.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

As Uganda struggles to save lives from an attack of COVID19, some Uganda Police officers are torturing, beating and shooting dead, civilians: 

8 May, 2020

Malik Fahad Jjingo

 

 

Good samaritans helping the injured woman onto a waiting vehicle that rushed her to hospital. PHOTO BY MALIK FAHAD JJINGO 

A trigger happy Local Defense Unit (LDU) personnel has shot dead a boda boda rider as he attempted to transport a pregnant woman on his motorcycle.

The incident happened at about 1.15pm along Elgin Street in Masaka Municipality.

According to the cctv footage from police, the yet to be identified LDU officer opened fire immediately after seeing the duo, a man and a pregnant woman sit on a motorcycle, which was parked outside Byansi Clinic.

 

CCTV managed to record all that what happened to these innocent civilians.

 

Mr Mathias Wamala, an attendant at Byansi Clinic, said the suspect trailed the duo to the clinic and back to where the motorcycle was parked. The motive of the shooting is yet to be known.

“A pregnant woman came with the deceased on a motorcycle and she entered the clinic, when she moved out to sit on the motorcycle, I saw an LDU officer following them with a gun, he approached the cyclist and shot him at close range,” he said.

The body of the man, soaked in blood was a few minutes later picked up by police and taken to Masaka Regional Referral Hospital mortuary for autopsy.

 

 URL: https://youtu.be/VMJKYekXqpo

The Member of Parliament, Francis Zaake, who has been tortured by the police of Uganda for distributing food to the needy in the current lockdown:

May 7, 2020

Written by Yusuf Serunkuma

Francis Zaake

Member of Parliament Francis Zaake who has been hospitalized after receiving a beating from the brutal police force.

 

The 2000-2010 decade saw a surge of poor people into politics: unemployed and sometimes unemployable university graduates, endangered advocates, broke merchants, events clowns, etc.

With very few exceptions, all of these fellows have turned out as dishonorable. This is because they came to politics poor, and politics was seen as their escape from poverty.

I locate them in the 2000-2010 decade because this period was the height of structural adjustment, and general collapse of African economies. Then came Museveni who gave these loafers a chance when he locked those with jobs out of politics with the 2005 constitutional amendments.

Before I turn to Francis Zaake, one of few youngsters who joined politics with stable means of sustenance, let me spend a bit more time on the danger of poor people joining politics.

Yes, I am arguing that only those with rich legacies should govern – until large populations are lifted out of poverty. The next two paragraphs that follow are quite theoretical.

The Islamic tradition almost equated poverty to disbelief. Something like, poor people are incapable of faith. The pangs of poverty – a permanent condition of precarity – of insufficient material resources exposes the poor to indescribable stress, making religion a luxury.

So, the poor are more prone to theft, deceit, murder, and promiscuity – in pursuit of survival – in degrees that their rich counterparts may not. To this end, only the rich can afford  discipline, ethics, good behaviour, truthfulness, poetry, empathy and other values espoused by religion. [Quite diametrically opposite to Karl Marx’s claim that religion was the opium of the masses].

I can hear a reader jeering and tsk tsk that the rich are often arrogant and boisterous. Those are also poor people masquerading. Also worth noting is that the poverty discussed here is not simply a condition, which one can overcome overnight.

The type of poverty is cultures-cultivated through generations of penury; a poverty that becomes a mode of existence. This type of is extremely dangerous since even when a person improves their material conditions, they remain poor in their worldview. So, they maintain a deceptive, crude, thieving identity.

They are never straight with the truth, and are meek, and perpetually insecure. They are easily corruptible and can never stand up for what is right, simply because their lives are bereft of any ideals beyond materiality. When these poor land in things, they accumulate rather primitively.

Francis Zaake: In 2018The Observer’s Baker Batte Lule sat down this youthful MP for an interview. Among other things, a youthful exuberance bordering on recklessness had brought Zaake plenty of fame. Especially during the Togikwatako campaign, Zaake put up a spirited fight in parliament, heckling and pushing as Museveni’s surrogates pushed through this blighted amendment on day one.

On day two, Zaake’s name was among those MPs suspended. We recall that soon after the names of the suspended MPs had been read, Museveni’s elite protection unit (SFC) entered parliament, beating many of them to pulp as they shoved and pushed them out of the house.

But as soon as they entered, Baker Batte narrates, “Zaake and friends threw chairs, microphones, jumped onto tables with their attackers in hot pursuit. When nothing was left, Zaake removed his belt and shoes, throwing them at his attackers.” Like his gango, Bobi Wine, Zaake’s fame grew by leaps and bounds.

Not all young men act like this. Even at Makerere University, it is common to find children from poor homes curled up in their dormitories during protests while those of rich parents run the streets. Zaake was not simply acting out of youthful recklessness but, rather, pedigree.

Like Kiiza Besigye, Stella Nyanzi and Mugisha Muntu, children from rich parents have an acute sense of justice, which easily translates into fierce action. Simply because they have rich pedigrees. Baker Batte tells us that the young Zaake was “director in all his family’s businesses, his savings account, [by senior two]...already had Shs 105m.”

He would go on to open a thriving business, “a general merchandise wholesale shop in Mityana.” The story continues that “by the time he was in S4, he had bought his first car, a Toyota Landcruiser Prado.”

Now we know that some of our poverty-stricken politicians have bought their first cars from parliament monies, and have terribly weak souls – or no souls at all.

This young legislator while being hosted on one celebrity prayer show on one of Uganda’s TVs, openly pleaded to God to help Uganda by killing Museveni.

I learnt that during the deftly hushed passing of the Shs 304bn Covid-19 supplement in parliament, Zaake almost went to blows with some gluttonous NRM legislator.

This boldness is not typical of kids from poor backgrounds. Wealth has a way of instilling a straightforwardness which borders on recklessness. Like Stella Nyanzi, a boldness born of rich pedigree is Zaake’s crime.

If there is anything we can learn from the targeted arrest and torture of this youthful legislator during this Covid-19 period, it is that the pandemic has, ironically, offered a unique moment for incumbents to harness new powers. They will not only use it to settle old scores, but also open new frontiers of staying in power.

yusufkajura@gmail.com

The author is a PhD fellow at Makerere Institute of Social Research.

 

Elective Politics is failing relief food distribution in the African country of Uganda:    

Businessman Hassan Basajjabalaba (2nd L) handing over food relief to Bushenyi District Covid-19 taskforce led by RDC Jolly Tibemanya (C) on Friday. PHOTO BY FELIX AINEBYOONA 

Businessman and the Bushenyi District National Resistance Movement (NRM) Chairman, Mr Hassan Basajjabalaba, has accused politicians in the district for failing distribution of relief food to the vulnerable people in the area.

Mr Basajjabalaba who was donating 20.5 tons of maize flour to Bushenyi Covid-19 taskforce on Friday, said him together with Bushenyi District Woman MP, Mary Karoro Okrut, Igara West MP, Raphael Magyezi, and Igara East MP Micheal Mawanda; had mobilized to support residents of Bushenyi District with relief food, but their efforts are being undermined by self-centred people playing cheap politics.

“We decided that we should mobilize support for our people, we first brought 40 tons and now we have brought 20.5 tons of maize flour. Am requesting the RDC that we should not mix politics in this, we should give food to people who deserve it,” he said.

Mr Basajjabalaba said some politicians in the district are using the situation to front their political intentions to the extent of paying LC1s not to distribute food to people with different political views.

“Am told that some leaders who want to contest are giving LCI chairpersons Shs30,000 each not to distribute this food. I have already reported to Lt Col Edith Nakalema about the money being exchanged and if it is proved to be true then that will be unfortunate for them,” he said.

Mr Basajjabalaba said that some people are also rebranding relief food bags by removing the names of real donors and putting theirs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

President Museveni  of Uganda has allowed East African cargo trucks to keep entering the country of Uganda:

24 April, 2020

Written by URN


President Yoweri Museveni has said locking out cargo trucks from entering Uganda is not an option in the prevention of the further spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country. 

 
 
Uganda's COVID-19 cases rose to 74 yesterday after 11 more truck drivers from Kenya and Tanzania tested positive. At least 19 of Uganda's latest 20 coronavirus cases have been imported into the country by truck drivers from neighbouring countries. 
This has led to many Ugandans who are now under the fourth week of lockdown to call for locking out truck drivers who have become the latest mass carriers of the virus.  
While flagging off vehicles donated by different people and organisations towards the fight against COVID-19, Museveni said Uganda being land locked can't afford to close its land borders and the solution lay in making sure that the truck drivers that are allowed in the country are free of the virus.
 
"We want to test these drivers before they come here. They should only be allowed to move when the results are released. I will detailedly address this matter on Tuesday," said the president.  
Museveni said Uganda's position that the Health minister, Jane Ruth Aceng presented to the East African Community ministers’ of health meeting, is relay driving where drivers take cargo up to their respective country exit points from where it is picked up by local drivers up to the final destination. 
"We started at the airport and we are now shifting to land borders. Tests have shown that we have problems with the truck drivers and at this very moment, the minister of Health is meeting line ministers of the different East African countries to map a way forward," said Museveni. 
 
Museveni also said another option includes deploying rapid testing at the border points so that drivers know their status before entering the country.
 
He said even regular testing Museveni said could be considered although he was quick to add this might be problematic because of overcrowding at the border, especially if drivers have to wait for their results before proceeding to their destinations. He also said they are still discussing whether to allow only one person in the truck.   
“We don’t need a turnboy because the roads in Uganda, and I hope in other countries are good. We have also got petrol stations every 15 miles. If we want one driver per vehicle, then this reduces the number,” Museveni said. 

 

He noted that the ultimate solution to the problem is to get a vaccine for the virus. 

“I have been discussing with our scientists and they are sure a vaccine can be developed. That’s the real answer, but that may take some months. Therefore, in the short run, prevention is the only way,” Museveni said.   

He thanked Ugandans for being vigilant and reporting any suspected coronavirus cases. He said with such an awaken population; the country will defeat the virus. He warned politicians to stop interfering in the efforts to defeat the virus. He singled out Acholi leaders who accosted the ambulance taking a truck driver who had tested positive to Gulu regional referral hospital.

“Entebbe hospital where these people are being treated is my neighbour just behind my fence but you haven’t heard me say I’m going to get the virus. We are tired of idiots; the people can be confined anywhere and the virus will not affect you. They must desist from interfering with the work of the health workers,” Museveni said.