At least 4000 finalists from Makerere University Business School (MUBS) are to miss their graduation in January next year following the failure by the school to remit Shs 2.64 billion to Makerere University in functional fees.
Makerere University Bursar, Augustine Tamale, says the money has accumulated from the 2012/13 to 2016/2017 academic year. Prof. William Bazeyo, the Makerere University acting deputy vice chancellor in charge of Finance and administration, says despite holding several meetings with MUBS administrators to clear the money, they have refused to pay up.
“They were supposed to pay a total of Shillings 6.2bn and they are remaining with Shillings 2.6bn, which we demand. They have paid some money but we cannot guarantee who has paid or not because they paid a lump sum and since we still demand them, no student will be allowed to graduate,” Prof. Bazeyo stated.
Adding that; “unfortunately unless MUBS remits portion of its students, we have informed its management that they will not graduate. The ministry of education has been informed and our first publication of those graduating will be out next week.”
MUBS, which is affiliated to Makerere University, specializes in business and management-related courses. It expected to present its graduands at the 68th graduation ceremony set for January 16 to 19 at Makerere University main Campus.
The Makerere University bursar, Tamale says every Ugandan or East African student at MUBS is supposed to pay Shillings 420, 000 per year in functional fees while an international student pays Shs1, 027,500, which MUBS hasn’t been remitting.
He says MUBS was expected to remit Shillings 6b for four academic years from 2012/2013 to 2015/16 but the business institution has only remitted about Shs4.6b leaving a balance of more than Shs2.6b.
The Makerere University Vice Chancellor, Prof Barnabas Nawangwe, says the decision stop MUBS students from graduating, was reached by the university council 2 years ago. He however, says they opted to engage MUBS to clear up in vain.
In January this year, the same issue came up, with Makerere claiming MUBs owed them Shs4.6billion in functional fees. The institution consequently announced they would block MUBS students from graduation.
The MUBS spokesperson, Mr Peter Odoki, had then dismissed allegations of a debt with Makerere.
“We do not owe Makerere any money, we have got revenue sharing agreement between Makerere and MUBS. So for them to claim that there is a debt, is fiction,’’ Mr Odoki said.
He noted that the only issue they have with Makerere is the new affiliation fee it is imposing on students expected to graduate and the continuing ones, asserting that the institution is not ready to meet the claims.
“What we have a disagreement with is an affiliated fee the Makerere bursar is trying to levy on the students. The new fee is wrong and against the law because the bursar has no authority to institute the new fee; so everything is illegal,” Mr Odoki said.