Sluggish uptake of international scholarships riles MPs

The low uptake of scholarships supplied to Uganda has develop into a serious concern to legislators on the Public Accounts Committee (PAC – Central Authorities).

A assessment of scholarships supplied to Uganda within the final three years laid naked that out of 280 scholarship slots offered, solely 162 are stuffed, leading to an beneath absorption of 42 per cent.

Whereas assembly the technical group from the Ministry of Training and Sports activities led by the Everlasting Secretary, Ketty Lamaro, on Thursday, 15 December 2022 on the audit report for the monetary yr ended 30 June 2021, MPs requested for correct administration of each authorities and bilateral scholarships for full absorption to maximise advantages.

“One of many hindrances on [bilateral] scholarships is when the beneficiaries are requested to pay for their very own lodging or medical care [which they cannot afford]. The training ministry wants to enhance on their budgeting to cater for all these,” stated Tororo South MP, Hon. Fredrick Angura.

The everlasting secretary blamed this on budgetary cuts and inadequacies ensuing from the latest COVID-19 pandemic.

Hon. Sarah Opendi (NRM, Tororo District Girl Rep.) urged the ministry to fast-track the method of creating a scholarship coverage to handle gaps within the administration of scholarships as suggested by the Auditor Normal.

“You declare to be giving out scholarships, however the place are these adverts put? Persons are being requested to pay cash in trade for scholarships. We want a coverage which ought to come earlier than the regulation and as soon as the regulation is out then we will want pointers to operationalise the regulation. So individuals [at the ministry] are sleeping on the job,” Hon. Opendi stated.

The Auditor Normal in his report had indicated that Uganda’s lack of a coverage on scholarships had restricted the nation’s capability to advance the curiosity of the ministry when negotiating for bilateral scholarships.

In keeping with Lamaro, the ministry has already drafted a coverage on scholarships and awaits submission to cupboard for approval.

Tasked by the committee chairperson, Hon. Medard Sseggona (NUP, Busiro East) to clarify why the training ministry didn’t have data of the variety of college students who’ve benefited from bilateral scholarships, the Commissioner for Admissions, Scholarships and College students’ Affairs on the ministry, Muzamil Mukwatampola, stated the Ministry of Overseas Affairs is greatest suited to know the precise beneficiaries.

“The bilateral scholarships come to us by means of the Ministry of Overseas Affairs; we depend on what they ship us. So we can’t declare to know all scholarships as a result of we don’t deal with bilateral points,” he stated.

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