Makerere University has increased fees for a number of undergraduate programmes starting with the 2018/19 academic year.
According to a circular released by the university, Bachelor of Journalism and Communication is among those whose fees has been hiked from Shs980,000 to Shs 1.2 million. Other courses include; Bachelor of Pharmacy from Shs 1.34 million to Shs 2 million as well as Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery from Shs 1.34 million to Shs 2 million.
Other courses in the tuition increment bracket are; Bachelor of Dental Surgery from Shs 1.34 million to Shs 2 million, Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Shs 1.34 to Shs 2 million, Bachelor of Environmental Health Science from Shs 1.05 to Shs 1.5 million, Bachelor of Information system and technology from Shs 1.3 million to Shs 1.6 million and Bachelor of Biomedical and Laboratory Technology from Shs 784,000 to Shs 1.5 million.
The fees increment largely affected College of Health Sciences. Apart from Bachelor of Journalism and Communication housed in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Bachelor of Information system and technology housed in College of Computing and Information Technology and Bachelor of Biomedical and Laboratory Technology that is homed in College of Veterinary Medicine, all other five courses affected by the increment are from the College of Health Sciences.
This comes a month after the university hiked fees for postgraduate students. The university the postgraduate fees were increased from a range of Shs 2.5 to 3.5 million to a range of Shs 5 million to Shs 10 million per academic year.
The University Acting Deputy Vice Chancellor – Finance and Administration Prof William Bazeyo and Spokesperson Rita Namisango referred this reporter to the Vice Chancellor, Prof Barnabas Nawangwe for a comment. Prof Nawangwe didn’t pick our various calls.
But when the university hiked postgraduate tuition last month, Rita Namisango defended the decision saying it would help the heavily indebted institution solve financial challenges it has faced for the past two decades. Currently, Makerere is indebted to the tune of about Shs 80 billion.
“Following recommendations with reference to findings of the Jamwa Report, Prof. Omaswa Report and the Visitation Committee Report on the need to charge the realistic cost of higher education, and further consultations with the National Council for Higher Education, surveys conducted by the Planning and Development of Makerere University as well as the Quality Assurance Directorate of Makerere University, it is clear that if Makerere University is to solve some of the financial challenges facing the institution, it should charge the realistic unit cost of higher education,” Namisango was quoted saying last month.
She added; “The Makerere University Council headed by Eng. Charles Wana-Etyem comprising representatives from the Ministry of Education and Sports, Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development and other stakeholders, resolved that all new graduate students (joining Makerere University in August 2018),the minimum tuition for any Graduate programme is Shs 5million.”
Asked whether the university would increase undergraduate tuition, she retorted then that the decision had not been reached.