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Bishops Asks Education Ministry to Retain Latin on Curriculum

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Joseph Anthony Zziwa, the Bishop of Kiyinda-Matyana diocese and Chairperson of the Uganda Episcopal Conference, is concerned that the new curriculum intends to relegate the teaching of ‘Latin’, which has a central position in the Catholic Church.
Cardinal Emmanuel Wamala (Left) Bishop Anthony Zziwa the Episcopal Confrence Chairperson and Masaka Bishop Serverus Jjumba at burrial of Monsignor Henry Kyabukasa on Saturday

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The Catholic Episcopal Conference of Uganda has asked the Ministry of Education and Sports to rescind its decision to drop Latin in the revised secondary education curriculum. 

The Ministry of Education through the National Curriculum Development Centre-NCDC has for some time been revising the education prospectus to make it more relevant to the demands of contemporary society. The revised curriculum, which has partly been rolled out reduces the number of O-level subjects from 32 to 20, merges several subjects, and discourages the teaching of those that were classified as less important to students.

Joseph Anthony Zziwa, the Bishop of Kiyinda-Matyana diocese and Chairperson of the Uganda Episcopal Conference, is concerned that the new curriculum intends to relegate the teaching of ‘Latin’, which has a central position in the Catholic Church. 

He says that the Episcopal Conference is uncomfortable with the revised curriculum, which he says interferes with the preferences of the Catholic Church and the training principles of priests. He expressed his concern at the burial of Monsignor Henry Kyabukasa, who was the longest-serving teacher of History and Latin at Bukalasa minor Seminary. 

Bishop Zziwa indicated that they are not ready to drop Latin from their seminaries and asked the Ministry of Education to make more adjustments to avoid clashing with the Church.

//Cue in: (Luganda) “naye njagala….   

Cue out: …..okujjamu eky’omugaso.”//  

According to Bishop Zziwa, besides being a central language of communication in the Catholic Church, Latin remains applicable to many professional fields that have a great impact on society, which qualifies the language to be among those that should be preserved.

//Cue in: “awo nno bassebo…..  

Cue out: …..gali mu Lulatin.”//   

Mathias Mpuuga Nsamba, the Leader of Opposition in Parliament-LOP noted that he had taken concern on the Bishop’s complaint and promised to present it to the relevant departments of government for consideration. He indicated that some of the reviews were rushed and decisions made without due consultations with all stakeholders.  

//Cue in: “tusabire eggwanga….     

Cue out; ….ayagala awulire.”// 

On the other hand, the Episcopal Conference eulogized Monsignor Henry Kyabukasa as an all-around priest, who has been exemplary to many people in his home diocese of Masaka and the entire Catholic Church in Uganda.  

The deceased priest was a younger brother to Cardinal Emmanuel Wamala. He breathed his last on Wednesday after servicing the Catholic priestly vocation for 62 years and was buried in the Priests mausoleum at Bukalasa minor seminary in Kalungu district.