By Innocent Anguyo
Kyambogo University has announced plans to use over 120 acres of its land for real estate development, in a bid to generate funds to improve the institution.
Prof Eli Katunguka, the acting Vice Chancellor of the university said the land currently occupied by the institution’s farm will be used to build hostels, apartments, rentals and sports facilities. The projects will kick-off later this year.
Acknowledging that underfunding was behind the shortage of staff, shortage of office space, poor sanitary conditions, limited ICT infrastructure and low staff motivation at Kyambogo, Katunguka said the institution desperately needs extra money to improve its services.
Some of the facilities will be built with funds internally generated from the university while a number of the projects will be undertaken under Private-Public-Partnership (PPP) and using donations.
The university farm, Katunguka said will be transferred to Kyambogo University’s 180-acre land in Namasiga, Mukono.
The scheme, Kyambogo spokesman Lawrence Madete said is part of the university’s master plan (2013-2030) which was recently launched by President Yoweri Museveni.
“The master plan will guide the development of the campus and other areas. This is an ambitious plan and we shall need support of everybody to achieve it,” Madete said. “It envisages erecting many buildings to address the shortage of teaching and office space, accommodation and putting up structures for income generation.”
Katunguka said part of the master plan will be implemented using the sh70.7b recently acquired from the African Development Bank (ADB).
The money will be used to renovate the Faculty of Engineering laboratory; construct new facilities in various faculties; and supply furniture and equipment to various departments.
Kyambogo will also use the money to construct a Science Park and an incubation Centre at the Faculty of Science.
A 2012 Kyambogo University report partly attributed the high staff turnover at the institution to poor remuneration and poor working conditions.
The survey was conducted by a four-member Ad hoc Committee of the Kyambogo University Council instituted at its 25th meeting held on 14th March 2012.
The members of the committee included Serwadda Kidandala as chairperson, Stella Muhereza as secretary, and Pamela Nizeyimana and Wilfred Nahamya as members.
Findings of the survey revealed that the staff complained of low salaries and generally poor remuneration. It also emerged that staff were not motivated and their efforts were rarely recognized.
Poor physical working environment manifested in lack of internet in staff offices and few offices prompting staff to sit in shifts also forced staff to flee Kyambogo, the study further revealed.
The committee called for an improvement of the salary structure in light of not only increasing the salary but also putting a clear reward system to benefit those who put in more effort in their work.
Kidandala signed the report on behalf of the committee and submitted it to James Kalebbo, the then Chairperson of the University Council on April 18 2012.
However, since then Kyambogo has found it hard to implement the recommendations of committee due to financial constraints.