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    Public Service Succumbs To Teachers’ Pressure; Calls Them For Meeting…

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    Public Service PS Catherine Bitarakwate (R) and UNATU boss Mr. Filbert Baguma (L)

    Public Service Permanent Secretary, Catherine Bitarakwate has written to striking teachers calling for an urgent meeting to resolve the grievances that prompted the industrial action.

    This comes a few days after Bitarakwate ordered for an immediate cease in the strike of teachers or else they are fired.

    She also ordered Chief Administrative Officers (CAO) to prepare disciplinary action against any teacher who will fail to turn up in class by this week.

    UNATU leaders however were not shaken and went ahead to advise their teachers not to succumb to any kind of intimidation because their industrial action is legally backed.

    In a letter to the teachers umbrella body, Uganda National Teachers’ Union (UNATU), Public Service has scheduled a meeting with teachers and settle their grievances as a way of stopping the strike.

    The letter dated 27th, June, is addressed to the General Secretary for UNATU, Mr. Filbert Baguma, and informs him that the meeting is to be held on July 1st, at the Ministry of Public Service.

    “Reference is made to the ongoing industrial Action by the Uganda National Teachers’ Union which started on June, 15th, 2022. This is therefore to invite you and four of your Union Executive Members for a meeting with the Ministry of Public Service on Friday, 1st, July 2022 at 2:00 pm in the Ministry Boardroom,” the letter reads in part.

    The letter further indicates that the meeting will focus on issues raised for Industrial Action.

     

    By Kalamira Hope

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    EDUCATION

    Fight For Gulu University Top Leadership Positions Deepens, Faculty Of Law Dean Dr. Shadat Rushes To Court Over His Dismissal…

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    Gulu University Dean Faculty of Law Dr. Shadat Mohmeded (inset top R) and the VC Professor George Openjuru (inset bottom R)

    The fight within the top leadership at Gulu University has deepened after Dr. Shadat Mutyaba Ssemakula Mohmeded the Dean Faculty of Law rushed to the High Court challenging his dismissal.

    In his affidavit, Dr. Shadat Mutyaba told Court that the university top management acted in blatant disregard of his fundamental rights with apparent bias, trickery and double prejudice against him.

    He explained that his troubles with the university leadership started in October 2023 when David Obol Otori the University Secretary served him a letter asking him to attend a top management meeting on 25th October 2023.

    He added that on the set date, some members of the University Management Committee informed him that they are in another meeting with Professor George Openjuru the University Vice Chancellor.

    However, on the same day in the evening, Obol summoned him for the meeting at 3pm.

    When he asked why he was summoned, Obol told him that he will get to know the charges against him during the meeting.

    When the meeting sat, it was chaired by the VC Prof. Openjuru, others in the meeting were; Associate professor David Okello Owiny, the Deputy Vice Chancellor; John Nyeko University the Bursar; Dr. Jerry Bagaya, Academic Registrar; Perez Matsiko, Chief ICT; Asaf Adebua Chief Planning and Development; Omar Moses Legal Officer; Agnes Oliver Ator Senior Human Resource and Hebert Manana who stood in for the University Librarian.

    During the meeting, Dr. Shadat Mutyaba said that he asked the Vice Chancellor why he commissioned John Okello to investigate him and compel him to resign.

    The VC Prof. Openjuru declined to answer his question but Obol protested Dr. Shadat Mutyaba’s question insisting that his question was diversionary, and that the meeting should proceed and the VC should continue questioning him.

    He claimed that when he was done questioning him, the Vice Chancellor directed other members in the meeting to also ask him questions including him clarifying on the alleged inconsistencies in regards to the names on his documents.

    Because of the many questions that were being fired at him, he reached a point when he informed the meeting that he was fatigued and stepped out for a break.

    Shadat said that when the meeting resumed, the Vice Chancellor informed him that there were further questions which needed explanation but they didn’t have time.

    He was told that the University top management will communicate to him later.

    He divulged that on 27th October 2023, he received a letter from the Office of the University Secretary informing him of more Top Management questions which required answers. He directed his lawyers on 3rd November 2023 to file a request for extension of time which was sent to the University Secretary through email and also physically.

    Dr. Shadat explained that on 10th November, 2023, the University Secretary communicated to him that he had not replied within the required seven days.

    He however allowed him to submit more information concerning his defense which he protested through his lawyer.

    He was directed to appear before the University Appointment Board on 7th December, 2023.

    On December 1st 2023, the University Secretary through a WhatsApp message told him that he had failed to respond to the University queries and on 8th of the same month, he attended the Appointment board where he was kept waiting until 8.00pm in the company of his lawyer Nasser Badiru Higenyi.

    “That on 9th December 2023, I was called by the Registrar of Records through my mobile to check my email, which I did on Saturday and I found the interdiction letter. Later on, I found the interdiction letter on the Gulu University Academic Staff Association (GUASA), WhatsApp group, the independent online and observer publication.  On 24th January 2024, I received a letter to appear before the Appointments Board,” Shadat’s affidavit reads in parts.

    He insists that the University top management sealed his fate when it was not duly constituted either under the Human Resources Manual or the University and other Tertiary institutions Act.

    He added that he was not given the investigation report which was presented to the Appointment Board to decide his fate since to the best of his knowledge, the meeting was null and void.

    He told Court that University Officials acted in a malicious and scandalous manner against him by subjecting him to grave injustice, mental anguish, deprived his self-esteem and career direction for which he prayed that Gulu University is found vicarious liable in general damages.

    Dr. Shadat further produced evidence showing that his academic record is very clean and that he is ready to produce all the persons he studied with from primary school to university in England.

    He narrated that he obtained his Master of Law at Kingston University and PhD from Brunel University all in London.

    His legal documents were confirmed by England’s Solictor’s Regulation Authority of England and Wales in July 2020.

    He explained that when he came back into the country, he went to the National Council for Higher Education to certify his academic papers. He then presented them to Gulu University before he was given a job.

    He added that he is the only person who went to the National Council for Higher Education to certify the academic papers he obtained from abroad. Other staff including those on the university top management didn’t bother.

    It is on these grounds that he pleaded with the Inspector General of Government (IGG) to pick interest into the matter.

    He alleged that his troubles started when he hosted the end of year Law Dinner at the university which was graced by; Supreme Court Justice Mike Chibita, Justice and Constitutional affairs minister Norbert Mao, Archbishop John Baptist Odama and other government and cultural dignitaries.

    “From that point onwards, the university Vice Chancellor and other top university management officials started seeing me as a threat. They have been fighting me because of my tribe and religion,” Dr. Shadat said.

    He added that for some time now, he has been getting death threats from unknown people who have been trailing him in a Toyota Hiace.

    He even reported the matter to police and other security agencies.

    He further accused the university Vice Chancellor and the university secretary of having a malicious agenda to character assassinate him through staging fabricated accusations including giving marks after having sex with university girls.

    He pleaded with the first lady, who is also the Minister of Education and sports Janet Kataha Museveni to intervene basing on Attorney General Kiryowa Kiwanuka’s legal opinion given that he was even subjected to the university Appointment Board illegally.

    The University has not yet filed their defense.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    EDUCATION

    Gulu University Law Graduates In Fear Of Losing Their Degrees After Faculty Head Is Interdicted On Tribal Grounds…

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    David Obol Otori (L), Dr. Shadat Mutyaba Ssemakula (C) and Prof. Openjur (R)

    Gulu university graduates from 2016 are in fear of losing their degrees after the faculty head was interdicted on alleged tribal grounds.

    On December 8, 2023 David Obol Otori, the Gulu University Secretary wrote to Dr. Shadat Mutyaba Ssemakula Mohmeded, the Dean Faculty of Law interdicting him while the top university management proceeds with investigations into his academic papers and other personal information.

    Otori claims that there were changes in names particularly on Dr. Shadat’s Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education (UACE) and Diploma in Laws documents.

    He put him to task to provide substantive evidence showing that they were legally completed.

    However, theGrapevine has learnt that there is a section of concerned citizens who are set to petition Prof. Dr. Eli Katunguka- Rwakishaya the chairperson of National Council for High Education asking him to force Gulu University to recall all law degrees awarded to graduates during the tenure of Dr. Shadat.

    One of the persons who petitioned Prof. Katunguka said that a person who lacks the required academic papers cannot supervise and pass graduates because he lacks the expertise and knowledge to do so.

    “The Dean of a faculty is a very important person because he or she is responsible for overseeing the functioning of the Faculty, mentoring and supporting faculty members, and attracting suitable persons to teach at the Faculty. The Dean is expected to lead the process of curriculum and pedagogy review at the Faculty. The Dean should enrich interaction and professional experience of faculty members. So, the degrees of Gulu University graduates are questionable,” a petitioner said.

    Gulu University Vice Chancellor Prof. George Openjuru Ladaah told Uganda Radio Network in an interview on Thursday that the University realized the inconsistencies in Shadat papers during a recent validation exercise for all staff.

    He added that they hadn’t paid much attention to the accused’s academic documents since joining the University in 2016 until recently when he was asked to provide certified copies and also offer more clarification on the discrepancies detected.

    When contacted, Dr. Shadat said, “I was written to, with a week’s notice to appear before the appointment board. I sat for 7hrs, and when I was called up, they just apologized before my lawyers and myself,” he said.

    He added Dan Norrach Odongo who was the chairman of the meeting told him that he will be called the next day to present his case.

    Unfortunately, he instead got an interdiction letter on that very day at 7:30pm.

    Dr. Shadat insists that the university secretary didn’t have jurisdiction to write to him the interdiction letter since the matter has already been referred to the appointment board which has never sat to listen to the complaints against him.

    He explained to theGrapevine that his academic record is very clean and that he is ready to produce all the persons he studied with from primary school to university in England.

    He revealed that he started his education from Kisozi Ranches primary school where he studied from up to primary four.

    He later join Bwara Primary School in Masaka district and the school confirmed that he sat his Primary Leaving Education (PLE).

    Among the pupils he study with is celebrated NBS Television news anchor Rukh- Shana Namuyimba Kitaka, Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence(CMI) boss Dean Kaare, Adam Sendegeya and others.

    After primary, he joined Gombe Secondary School and his headmaster was Hajji Lubega Waggwa.

    He sat for his O-Level at Kawempe Muslim Secondary School and his headmaster was Hajji Matovu.

    Among the students he studied with is Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC) lawyer Musa Kabega, High Court judge Faruk Lubega among others.

    He attended his A-Level at Kibibi Secondary School and among his Old boys is Nasser Basajjabalaba a city businessman, Abdru Kayongo and others.

    After A-Level, he traveled to England for further studies and obtained his Bachelor of Law from Kingston University, he did a Diploma course as a Solicitor and qualified as a barrister and started practicing law in England.

    He obtained a Master of Law at Kingston university and PhD from Brunel University all in London.

    His legal documents were confirmed by England’s Solictor’s Regulation Authority of England and Wales in July 2020.

    He explained that when he came back, he went to the National Council for Higher Education to certify his academic papers which was done.

    He then presented them to Gulu University before he was given a job.

    He added that he is the only person who went to the National Council for Higher Education to certify the academic papers he obtained from abroad.

    Other staff including university top management didn’t bother. It is on these grounds that he pleaded with the Inspector General of Government (IGG) to pick interest into the matter.

    He claimed that his troubles started when he hosted the end of year Law Dinner at the university which was graced by; Supreme Court Justice Mike Chibita, Justice and Constitutional affairs minister Norbert Mao, Archbishop John Baptist Odama and other government and cultural dignitaries.

    “From that point, the university Vice Chancellor and other top university management started thinking that I was threatening to take over their offices which is not true. They have been fighting me because of my tribe and religion,” Dr. Shadat said.

    He added that for some time now, he has been getting death threats from unknown people who have been trailing him in a Toyota Hiace.

    He reported the matter to police and other security agencies.

    He accused the university Vice Chancellor and the university secretary of having a malicious agenda to character assassinate him through staging fabricated accusations including giving marks after having sex with university girls.

    He pleaded with the first lady, who is also the Minister of Education and sports, to intervene in his matter so that he receives justice because he is also a Ugandan.

     

    By Grapevine Reporter

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    EDUCATION

    REVEALED: 30-year-old Investor Injects Billions In First Ever International School In Masaka…

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    On the Matanga hill in Masaka city is seated a 10-acre world class Hill View primary school Matanga with international standards and educational services despite teaching a local curriculum.

    The school which is yet to celebrate its one year anniversary has been an academic hub in Greater Masaka and the country at large due to its balanced curriculum which offers all-round well balanced education to children from different backgrounds.

    Our in depth research has proven that in just a space of a few months, the school proprietor has invested over 2 billion Shillings in the school in terms of educational services and infrastructure.

    Who is behind this mega project?

    Our investigations have revealed that 30-year-old Ssentongo Fredrick Lugonvu alias Mwana wa Taata, a Buganda based journalist, life coach and business man who mainly deals in hardware stores, all the way from Busubi Village Lwengo District is the proprietor of Hill View Primary school Matanga.

    Our team contacted the proprietor Ssentongo Fredrick Lugonvu, a humble and down to earth soft speaking gentleman and throughout our eight minutes conversation with him, he remained lip tight on whether he owns the multibillion school.

    However this was not shocking due to his nature of being a reserved person whose strength and weak points are hard to determine.

    We made an impromptu visit to the school and the first impression at the gate gives you a clear picture of how an international school must be. With unmatched conducive environment and well set up infrastructures, the school is seated on Matanga hills with a cool breeze from Lake Birinzi.

    After introducing ourselves we were directed to the office of the public relations officer of the school who took us through what makes the school stand out among other schools in the area and the country at large.

    A humble and jolly but equally principled PRO Nambaziira Mariam told us that the school is systematically run starting from the School management committee, head teacher and his deputies, heads of departments, Heads of section, non-teaching staff and the pupils’ leaders.

    She told us that the question of ownersip doesn’t arise since he is not involved in the day to day running of the school.

    She however revealed that at the grand opening of the school on 30th November 2023, the owner will be made known to the public.

    What makes Hill View Primary school Matanga unique?

    Pupils are only required to clear school fees and their personal necessities because other requirements like; school uniform, mattresses, basins, jerry cans among others are provided for by the school.

    We noticed that Hill View Primary School Matanga provides a balanced nutritious diet to the pupils. It also offers co-curricular activities especially; games, sports, aerobics, music, dance and drama with each item having its independent facility.

    As we toured the school, we found a new three stored flat building being erected.

    What is its capacity?

    According to Nambaziira, more structures are to be set up and once completed, the school will accommodate about 3000 boarding ambassadors as they are referred to in their school language.

    To have a virtual view of this impressive paradise, you can visit; website at www.hillviewmatanga.com

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