Rugege calls on varsities to enhance education quality
The Executive Director of the National Council for Higher Education, Prof. Geoffrey Rugege, has called on universities in the East African Community (EAC) partner states to play a key role towards improving the quality of education in the region.
He made the call, yesterday, during the opening of a three-day Uganda Universities Exhibition at Serena Hotel in Kigali.
The exhibition was organised by the Commonwealth Secretariat in partnership with Uganda Export Promotion Board.
“In order to promote the quality of education in higher institutions of learning among EAC partner states, there is a need to create a regulatory framework so that the marketable products of higher education are regulated in such a way that there are no unfair practices,” Rugege said.
The official noted that lack of a harmonised collaboration among universities and other higher institutions of learning in EAC was a key stumbling block.
Uganda’s Minister of Education and Sports, Jessica Alupo said: “Uganda is strongly committed to the continued cooperation with Rwanda through bilateral and multilateral frameworks, especially in the education sector, and through this, sustained collaboration aspirations and objectives of the two sister countries will be easily met”.
According to a report by the Uganda National Council of Higher Education, 16,000 foreign students are currently studying at various higher institutions of learning in Uganda, while an estimated 40,000 foreign students study at the country’s secondary and primary education level.
According to the minister, 800 Rwandan students are currently pursuing their studies at various Ugandan universities and other institutions of higher learning.
“Uganda and Rwanda, as you know, have enjoyed a symbiotic bilateral and multilateral relationship since our colonial times, and when you look at the systems of education in both countries, they are similar and it is in this regard that we found Rwanda a timely and reasonable destination to begin with as far as promoting Uganda’s education sector in EAC is concerned,” Alupo explained.
She said her ministry would create an environment to enable Rwandan universities to market their products in Uganda as well.
Rwanda and Uganda signed a memorandum of understanding to promote exhibitions on rotational basis as a form of information exchange in the areas of education, science, technology and research.
Uganda’s Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives, Amelia Kyambadde said: “Our mission in Rwanda is to share with you the opportunities that are available in the higher education sector in Uganda so that we can, together, build quality population that is capable of lifting us at higher level of economic and social development in the two sister nations”.
“Rwanda’s GDP is now about $5.6 billion with a growth rate of 7.5 per cent, meaning it is one of the six fastest growing economies in Africa,” Kyambadde said.
She added that trade between Rwanda and Uganda has been enhanced through the recent Uganda-Rwanda Trade Development Bilateral cooperation framework, which was signed in January this year.
The education fair attracted 12 Ugandan universities.
Contact email: steven.mugisha[at]newtimes.co.rw