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Imbalances Cited in UGX 530b Secondary Education Expansion Project

The project will see 116 schools constructed. Of these, 84 schools will be constructed in non-refugee hosting districts while 32 new schools will be constructed in the refugee-hosting districts. at least 61 existing schools in refugee-hosting districts will also be expanded.
Pupils in a school at Ayilo refugee camp in Adjumani

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Members of Parliament have tasked the Ministry of Education and Sports to revise the list of districts benefiting from the 529 billion Shillings’ secondary education expansion project. 

The project will see 116 schools constructed. Of these, 84 schools will be constructed in non-refugee hosting districts while 32 new schools will be constructed in the refugee-hosting districts. at least 61 existing schools in refugee-hosting districts will also be expanded.

But several members of Parliament have opposed the project, saying the government had not included a number of sub-counties in the program, while several districts got more schools than others.

Arua Woman MP Lilian Paparu says that Isingiro district, for instance, has several schools to benefit from the project, while many districts don’t have a single school allocated for expansion or development. There are 15 schools to be constructed in 15 different sub-counties in Insingiro while Abim, Adjumani, and Agago districts, have only one school provided for.

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Bunya County MP James kabeketerya says it is unfair for some districts to have up to six schools benefiting from the programme, yet some districts have none and asked the Ministry to revise the list.

//Cue in; “Appeal to the…

Cue out… very unfair that.”//

The matter came up as Ministry of Education officials led by the Minister of State for Higher Education John Chrysostom Muyingo, and Joyce Moriku Kaducu, the Minister of State for Primary Education appeared before the Parliamentary committee on education to defend a loan of USD 90 million and a grant of USD 60 million from the International Development Association of the World Bank. 

Muyingo appealed to members to support the loan and grant which will ensure that at least each sub-county has got a secondary school. Muyingo says that as Government, they have noted that some new districts established between 2015-2016 are not catered for but they will be in the future.

//Cue in; “Component one expansion…

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Patrick Nsamba Oshabe, the Kassanda North MP says that Parliamentarians should not be taken up by the desire to have a school in their districts but scrutinize if the loan is necessary.

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However, Upper Madi Okollo County MP Isaac Etuka said the list is not representative and portrays regional imbalance.

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Jonam county MP Emmanuel Ongiertho  equally says the loan should not be passed in the state it is.

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But Muyingo explained that some districts had a comparative advantage because of their status as refugee-hosting districts but adds that the issues raised by MPs would be reviewed.

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