The cases came up over the last two weeks since the reopening of schools as the government ended a 22-month long lockdown on educational institutions. But as schools re-open their gates, hundreds of learners are reported to be stuck in homes, with no fees or even money to clear the school requirements.
The District Probation Office in
Luwero has so far recorded 25 cases of men, reported by their wives and
partners, for failing to pay school fees for their offspring’s.
The cases came up over the last
two weeks since the reopening of schools as the government ended a 22-month long
lockdown on educational institutions. But as schools re-open their gates,
hundreds of learners are reported to be stuck in homes, with no fees or even money
to clear the school requirements.
One of the women, who sought
anonymity said the husband abandoned the family during the lockdown and has
failed to send any support for the children to return to school, prompting her
to seek help from the authorities.
Dan Kaweesi, a resident of
Wobulenzi Town is among the men who were reported to the probation officer
after failing to return his six children to school.
He blamed the delay on
disagreements with his wife on a plan to transfer the children from private to government
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Joyce Namigadde, the Luwero
District Probation Officer says that at least 25 men have been reported to
their office but adds that the number could be higher because similar cases
have been registered by village and sub-county councils across the district.
Namigadde explains that some men
claim that they lost jobs during the prolonged COVID-19 lockdowns and they are
unable to pay fees for children while others neglected the families over
domestic violence. She says that in some cases they have counselled the men and
advised them to find a way to return their children to school.
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Richard Nyombi, the LCIII
Chairperson of Busiika Town Council says that he has advised some men who claim
not to have money to take the children to government schools where they only need
to pay for meals. Nyombi says that they have also embarked on the sensitization
of residents to ensure that they return all children to school.
Luwero District Secretary for
Education Daniel Kyaterekera says that some children have also deliberately
refused to return to school citing minor demands like new shoes. He advised men to dialogue with wives and
children on how best they can return them to school.
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By the end of the second week,
schools especially in rural areas of Luwero district had registered 55-60 per cent
of learners who had returned for studies compared to those they had before