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EALA Passes Inter-University Council Bill 2010 :: Uganda Radionetwork
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EALA Passes Inter-University Council Bill 2010

The East Africa Legislative Assembly (EALA) on Thursday passed the Inter-University Council of East Africa Amendment Bill 2010.

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The East Africa Legislative Assembly (EALA) on Thursday passed the Inter-University Council of East Africa Amendment Bill 2010.

The Bill was brought to the assembly as a private member’s bill moved by Ugandan MP, Dan Wandera Ogalo.

The law provides for high quality education from national and foreign universities and also establishes campuses or partnerships with the institutions within the EAC region.

It confers power and responsibility on the IUCEA to accredit higher institutions and universities to enable them function regionally throughout the community.

The law seeks to create opportunities for a higher level of university enrolment, leading to increased investment in tertiary education.

The East African Legislative Assembly showed serious divisions on the matter with wide rejections coming from the representatives from Tanzania, while their Ugandan counterparts pushed for the passing of the Bill.

The council of ministers had objected to the bill citing the dangers it is likely to pose to the member states. Peter Munya, the chairperson of Council of ministers told the house that during the consultation the Inter-University Council raised concern on capacity. They had earlier observed that the capacity did not allow them to accredit other universities.

Munya told the legislators currently sitting in Uganda that there is a possibility to have conflict of interest by the council if the council as an association of universities in EAC by registration is the same institution given the mandate to accredit other universities.

Munya also insisted that there has to be a yard stick by which to allow the council to accredit other emerging local and foreign universities. But in the current situation there are no harmonized standards and curriculum to act as the benchmark of accreditation.

Dr. Aman Kabourou, the EALA MP from Tanzania expressed fears that the bill would only create a parallel system for accrediting new universities. Dr. Kabourou observed that each of the five partner states has its own mechanism and standards of accrediting, adding that giving the IUCEA powers to accredit universities will only be contradictory. He said even if the bill was passed into law he urges the member states not to accept the law.

But to Wandera Ogalo, the mover of the bill, and Lydia Wanyoto, the law is timely in the region. They said the law has unified the mode of accrediting higher institutions of learning and created a one stop center for all institutions in the region.

This will help all foreign and local universities do the accreditation once. This will allow exportation of education services within the region.

Dorah Byamukama, another legislator from Uganda said the bill will help inprove the quality of education at the university level in the five member states. She says the law will help those seeking employment in the region.

//Cue in:we shall have……..

Cue out: quality of our education.//

The bill now awaits assent from the five member states of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi. But the law must be accepted by all partner states before it is implemented.

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