The executive program, which will run on weekends, was born out of disagreements by the School and university management on the remuneration of lecturers on the Evening Programme.
Bachelor of Laws graduands at the recently concluded Makerere University's 70th graduation ceremony
Makerere University Law School is seeking
financial independence to run the proposed Executive Bachelor of Laws (LLE) Programme
that is scheduled to start next month. Students
enrolling on the program will be paying a
whooping Shillings 5M per semester compared to the Shillings 1.7 million for
the normal Programme.
This will make the Executive Bachelor of Laws
(LLE) Programme, the most costly at Makerere University. The school says that with
financial independence, it would be able to control the finances, retain and
invest profits to grow and improve the program, which the law dons say may not
be achieved if the Programme is run under the Integrated Financial Management
The executive program, which will run on weekends,
was born out of disagreements by the School and university management on the remuneration
of lecturers on the Evening Programme. The Law school also runs Master
of Laws and Doctor of Laws Programmes. Since it started in 1992, the School introduced an evening Programme
where it admitted a second set of students.
These students would study from 5pm
-9:00pm Monday to Friday and 8am to 5:30pm on Saturdays. This was meant to allow persons who would have
loved to study to become barristers but would not be in position to attend the
day Programme to obtain a qualification. It was also started to
create an avenue for the School to generate additional revenue for staff
welfare and general School needs.
The programme according to the School report became an
instant success, with many students, including working class persons enrolling.
As a result, the school was able to raise revenue, which it used to pay staff
allowances and even built lecture rooms.
The evening Programme came with additional responsibilities
for both academic and non-academic staff. “By way of example,
custodians would have to stay behind to manage the rooms up to 9pm,
administrative staff would have to attend to an additional number of students,
while cleaners would have to clean classrooms twice or thrice a day,” says the School
of Law position paper.
“It is based on this that the Faculty, then
created what was termed as a “Top-Up”, allowance, paid to everyone across the
board with amounts determined by one’s rank,” adds the paper. URN has also established that the lecturers would in addition
receive a gross pay of Shillings 50,000 for every hour taught on the evening
program, although the figure had for years remained static.
the evening Programme, according to Law School officials has over the years run
into problems, especially with respect to staff remuneration. Progressively, the money the School retained
from tuition kept reducing in percentage to an extent that the School became
dependent on the center. In 2013, Makerere University staff laid
down their tools demanding 100% salary increment.
Although, government promised to address the
demands for a pay hike, the University Council managed to woo staff to return
to work and approved an incentive allowance of up to 70% of the salaries at
that time. With the introduction of incentive allowances, the top-up
allowance was scrapped off alongside other 33 allowances that included
administration, research supervision, top-up for teaching evening students, and
sitting allowances for specific meetings among others.
However, following the collapse of the
allowances, negotiations at Makerere University retained what was termed as
“ring-fenced money” meant for units with “peculiar needs” with the Law School
inclusive. However, following the university’s failure to pay staff
incentives in 2016 and disagreements that followed thereafter prompted the
appointment of a Visitation Committee led by the late Dr. Abel Rwendeire.
committee recommended the abolishment of the incentive allowances. As a result, Makerere University managers established the
Evening and Teaching Allowance committee that studied the feasibility of
evening teaching and gave recommendations to the post- incentive era. It was this committee that gave birth to the leadership/
responsibility allowance worth Uganda Shillings 4.8billion. This allowance was
to benefit only heads of units and academic leaders leaving out lecturers.
It is at the center of this stalemate that the University
Council resolved that effective Academic Year 2018/19; all new students would
be admitted on the day programme from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm or on the afternoon
programme from 2:00 pm to 6:00pm. Due to the failure by management to remit back some of the
money paid by Law students, the staff were demotivated and therefore made the
evening programme “unsustainable.”