President Museveni on Friday sought to have a meeting with Uganda Management Institute leaders to understand the courses being taught before he can honour their request to fund a multipurpose building at the main campus in Kampala.
Mr Museveni, who officiated over the institution’s 16th graduation wondered why government bodies continued to outsource consultancy services outside the country yet the skills they want are being trained within.
“I am not very familiar with procedures because I spent a lot of time where procedures are not very important. What I am definitely familiar with is management of business…How can a business be profitable? I hope you are teaching business people not only to manage procedures…If you have all these skills then why does Mr [John] Mitala outsource consultancy from outside? There must be a problem,” Mr Museveni noted. Mr John Mitala is the head of Public Service and Secretary to Cabinet.
He added: “Either the graduates here are not ready or Mitala maliciously refuses to eat the food grown at home and they go to outsource. Which is of the two?”
The graduates then responded in unison that government officers were maliciously not using their skills.
The President then asked all the stakeholders to meet and find a solution that will see the institution’s graduates absorbed in the job market.
“I see the whole tent full of Master’s degree students. The good thing you are all here; the trainers, the consumers and the trainees. Let’s solve the two problems. If there is a problem of undercooking, we get some things, which are missing and put them there because the problem is clear. If on the other hand the course is fully packed but the managers in government are outsourcing for no reason, then they should stop. I will get time and sit with your professors here and also audit a bit what is being taught so that I can see if the whole spectrum is covered,” Mr Museveni said.
In their speeches, UMI director general Dr James Nkata, and chancellor Ms Geraldine Bitamazire, appealed to government to support the construction of a multipurpose building that will cost the institution Shs65 billion.
“The institute is budgeting to raise Shs10 billion from internally generated revenue to implement this plan. We request for government support,” Ms Bitamazire said.
The President reechoed his earlier call for a meeting with the institution’s leaders before he can give them any money.
“You talked of Shs65 billion to build infrastructure. That is not big money. What I propose is a meeting between me and your leaders so that I find out what the problem is. Is it undercooked graduates or the outsourcing?”
About 2,701 students were conferred upon Master’s degrees and post graduate diplomas. Three students were awarded doctor of philosophy (Phd).
They included Dr Hilda Musubira, Dr Alfred Wamurubu and Dr Gad Ruzaaza, who all received a doctor of philosophy in management and administration.