Dr Lorna Magara, the Chairperson of Makerere University Council noted that one of the major challenges in handling perpetrators of sexual harassment is that the University cannot suspend implicated staff beyond three months.
Makerere University management wants parliament
to revise some of the existing laws on sexual harassment.
Dr Lorna Magara, the Chairperson of Makerere University Council noted that one
of the major challenges in handling perpetrators of sexual harassment is that
the University cannot suspend implicated staff beyond three months.
Speaking at a launch of an online platform; Kicking Sexual
Harassment out of Higher Education Institutions in Uganda-KISH Magara noted
that the three months elapse before investigations are completed which
interferes with the investigations.
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In 2018, Makerere University Council made revisions in the
institution’s “zero tolerance” policy on sexual harassment, which places the
burden of proof on the perpetrators.
The Policy and Regulations against Sexual Harassment; and the Safer
Universities Project was subsequently launched in 2019. It also provides
for 100 members of the Vice Chancellor’s Standing Roster to investigate sexual
Last year, the Makerere University Appointments Board dismissed
Edward Kisuze, an officer in the Academic Registrar’s Department, who was convicted
by the court for indecent assault of a female student.
Kisuze’s troubles started in 2018 when he was arrested for sexually assaulting
Rachael Njoroge in his office she had gone to certify her academic documents.
His arrest followed a photo that circulated on social media showing the
assistant registrar sexually assaulting Njoroge.
Jacob Oulanya, the Speaker of Parliament commended the platform and advised
that it is broadened to accommodate representatives of different stakeholders in
the fight against sexual harassment.
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A baseline survey conducted over the past year on the platform indicated
that over 300 victims comprising of 80 percent of female staff and 90 percent
of students at Makerere University had never reported sexual harassment inflicted
Professor Grace Bantebya Kyomuhendo, the Kick Sexual Harassment
out of Higher Education Institutions project investigator noted that with the
launch of the system, institutions should consider incorporating a course unit
on sexual harassment across each discipline.