MMU University Council Holds its 1st Stakeholders’ Meeting as a Public University

The 13th and 14th of October 2022 will remain memorable to Mountains of the Moon University (MMU) as the University Council held its’1st ever Stakeholders’ meeting since its transformation from a private to a Public University at Lake Saaka Campus, Fort Portal City. The Stakeholders met included; District leaders from Kabarole, Kyenjojo, Kyegegwa, Kamwenge, Bunyangabu, Kasese, Kitagwenda, Bundibugyo, Fort-Portal City and Ntoroko; religious leaders; a Member of Parliament; Management and Staff of MMU. Other stakeholders included staff from: Nyaika Hotel; Stanbic Bank and Centenary Bank.

This was a great opportunity that brought together the University Council and the Resident District Commissioners, Chief Administrative Officers, District Local Council Chairpersons and their Executive Secretaries, District Education Officers, Chairpersons of Head Teachers’ Associations, religious leaders of different faiths (SDA, CoU, Muslim and Catholic); Top University Management and other Staff of MMU on a round-table to update them on the progress made in the operationalization of MMU as a Public University; and to discuss matters of the development and growth of MMU as a Centre of excellence in teaching, learning and community engagement in the Rwenzori region.

The MMU Deputy Vice-Chancellor (DVC) Prof. John M. Kasenene explained that the sixteen-year journey, growth, and transformation from Private to Public University has been rough, rocky, and challenging where only persons of great faith, hope, and determination dared to continue the support to the desired conclusion.

“Allow me, dear members of the MMU current authority and community of teaching staff, administrators, and support staff to say a big thank you to you; the two prominent authors of “MMU great idea” Dr. Hon. Justice Seith.T Manyindo and Prof. Edward B.Rugumayo, the former Board of Directors, the former Chairperson University Council Rt.Col. Tom Butime and all political leadership of Rwenzori Region; and the Kabarole Research Centre & Resource Centre (KRC) for supporting MMU for the purpose of providing higher education in the Tooro Rwenzori Region” Prof. Kasenene said.

He disclosed that the backbone and strength of MMU right from the start has been community support, partnership and collaboration adding, that the University was blessed with a diversity of National and International donors, projects, and collaborations of identified needs. He was quick to mention a long-time collaboration and Donor spanning over 10 years -The VLIR-UOS a Flemish Inter-University Council (VLIR) and University Cooperation for Development (UOS) supported the Institutional University Cooperation (IUC) partner Program where MMU has continued to be a beneficiary. He was happy to state that the partner program has so far produced 9 Ph.D. scholars, assisted staff to undertake specialized short courses, and promoted action research in soil quality, water quality, dairy value chain, and aquaculture of wild fish species.

Without mincing his words Prof. Dr. Kasenene was grateful to the Minister of Education and Sports Mrs. Jane Kataha Museveni, and the Transition Taskforce (TTF) which was headed by the current Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Pius Coxwell Achanga for undertaking the herculean task of preparing MMU for a Government takeover which was accomplished in three years.

The Chairperson, University Council Eng. Dr. Ben Manyindo enumerated the progress made in the operationalization of MMU as a Public University:

  1. Constitution of the University Council in accordance with section 38 of the Universities and Other Tertiary Institutions Act 2001, as amended and embarked on its work in April 2022.
  2. Subsequent to the recommendation of the University Council, H.E the President appointed Prof. Edward B. Rugumayo as chancellor of Mountains of the Moon University.
  3. The University Council through management successfully engaged the Ministry of Public Service to provide a staff structure that is in line with National Council for Higher Education recommendation ratio of 70:30 for academic to administrative staff. He was glad to report that the Ministry of Public Service agreed in principle to support MMU to progressively move towards the attainment of this ratio. In the year 2022/2023, this ratio stands at 58.6%
  4. The University secured Vote 313 from the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development; and 40 Billion was appropriated by Parliament for financial year 2022/2023. He was grateful to the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Finance and Parliament for the support.
  5. Validated and interviewed staff of the former private MMU and qualified staff were considered and categorized into retention in current positions, designation, and redeployment  based on the suitability  and availability of positions within the MMU structure.
  6. The University senate has also been constituted in accordance with the University and Other Tertiary Institutions Act 2001 as amended and the Top Management is ensuring smooth running of the University.
  7. The University Council has also shared with staff and management its commitment to transforming MMU into a Centre of Excellence for teaching, learning, and research. The Council has also further selected its niche as ICT, Agriculture, Environment, and Natural Resources as well as Tourism and Hospitality Management. He hoped that Government support would drive this vision that will contribute to quality human resource towards value addition, industrialization, protection of the environment and sustainable promotion of tourism in Uganda.

Eng. Dr. Ben Manyindo later announced that the MMU 14th graduation ceremony would be held on 4th November 2022. This will be the first graduation ceremony under the Public dispensation. He further said that H.E the President of the Republic of Uganda General Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, has been invited and is expected to officiate at the function to be held at Lake Saaka campus, Fort-Portal City.

He explained that by end of December 2022, the operationalization process of MMU as a Public University will be completed, and thereafter the University will be in a position to play its rightful role among other established Universities.

The stakeholders and the University Council agreed that the Stakeholder engagement becomes an annual event.

Leave a Reply

one × two =