The MasterCard Foundation in Toronto has expressed concerns about the recent unrest at Makerere University.
The MasterCard scholarship is a programme that was initiated by the MasterCard Foundation in Toronto, Canada to give the less advantaged students in Africa an opportunity to learn and prosper.
Having awarded the last batch of its scholarships at Makerere University this year, the foundation has expressed fears over the violence that rocked Makerere University over the past two weeks as students continue to demonstrate against the 15% tuition fees increment.
In a statement released on their official website, the MasterCard Foundation expressed concerns about safety and security all people at Makerere University related to the student protests.
MasterCard says that they support freedom of expression and they believe in “civil discourse.”
“MasterCard Foundation is deeply concerned about the violence taking place at Makerere University surrounding the student protests related to the fees structure at the university. The foundation (MasterCard) supports freedom of expression and believes in civil discourse. The foundation does not condone violence in any situation,” the statement that was accessed by NilePost reads in part.
MasterCard also noted that they are actively engaging with the leadership at Makerere University and members of the Scholars Program Implementation Team to” better understand the situation,”
Early this year, according to the MasterCard program coordinator in Uganda Justine Namaarwa, the foundation awarded a total of 432 scholarships, 94% of which were to Ugandans by either birth of other criteria and only 6% went to other international students from countries like Burundi, Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Cameroon among others.
Mollie Siperia Saasiraabo who is one of the students accused of spear heading the strike against what they term as unfair fees increment turned out to be scholar on the same MasterCard program. Asked if she will lose her place on the programe, Toni Tiemens, a director in charge of corporate communications at MasterCard said that they support freedom of expression and she will not be losing her place on the program.