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Makerere Abandons Mobile Money for Student's Allowances

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Stephen Katega, the Acting Dean of Students, says they are waiting for guidance from the bursar on how to proceed with the payment of the students allowances.
Mobile Money booth in Kampala
Makerere University has abandoned  the idea of using mobile money to pay student allowances, according to the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe. 

The decision  comes in the wake of the introduction of one percent tax on each mobile money transaction. 

"We tried it out last semester and you remember students opposed it. So we will not attempt again. We cannot go in that area. Even you can see the taxes," Prof. Nawangwe said.

Government sponsored students staying off campus receive 708,750 Shillings each semester as a living-out allowance to cover the cost of their accommodation and meals.

At least 127,500 Shillings is meant for rent in four months, 21, 250 Shillings for Water and Electricity, 84, 000 Shillings transport excluding weekends and  476,000 Shillings for food.

In the previous semester, Cyriaco Kabagambe, the Makerere Dean of Students communicated to students indicating that they have changed from paying through their bank accounts to the E-wallet effective last semester.

He asked the students to submit their registered mobile money numbers to enable the university to process the allowances for the semester. However, the university suspended the program in February following complaints from some students that they didn't have registered mobile money numbers.

The program was expected to become fully operational in the new semester that starts in August. But Prof. Nawangwe says they have no intentions of trying out the system again.

Stephen Katega, the acting Dean of Students, says they are waiting for guidance from the bursar on how to proceed with the payment of the student's allowances.

"Our role is to prepare lists of students who have submitted their phones and bank accounts and tell the bursar to pay. It is not our role know which method is okay for the university to pay," Katega said.