National
Gov’t to offer 600 scholarships for Oil and Gas
Publish Date: Jun 28, 2014
Gov’t to offer 600 scholarships for Oil and Gas
Education Minister Jessica Alupo
  • mail
  • img
newvision

By Innocent Anguyo and Conan Businge

The government is set to offer at least 600 scholarships in Oil and Gas courses for students from the Albertine region, using funds acquired from the World Bank.


The Albertine Graben in the Western part of Uganda consists of the nine districts of Hoima, Masindi, Buliisa, Fort Portal, Kasese, Bundibujo, Kanungu, Nebbi and Amuru.

Speaking to New Vision in an interview, Education Minister Jessica Alupo said government had obtained a loan of $28m (approximately sh72b) from the World Bank, part of which would be used to bankroll the scholarships.

“These scholarships are ring-fenced for students from the Albertine region so that they can start reaping the benefits of oil and gas as the host communities,” said Alupo. The scholarships will be offered starting in the next academic year.

Alupo noted that the scholarships would help the host communities to develop the capacity to meet the skills demands of oil and gas production.

The courses will be taken at Uganda Technical College, Kicwamba and Uganda Petroleum Institute, Kigumba (UPIK).

The scholarships will be at the levels of certificate, diploma and degree. Alupo said UPIK will soon introduce degree courses for oil and gas.

Students will apply for the scholarships once the ministry of education makes an announcement in the media.

The scholarship covers tuition fees, accommodation, feeding and living stipend. O’ level and A’ level leavers will benefit from the scheme.
The scholarships come at a time when people remain pessimistic about the readiness of the Albertine region to meet the skills needs of oil production.

Ronald Kwesiga, a senior six student from Masindi district commended government for introducing the scholarship, saying as much as their region is the source of oil; they do not have the necessary skills to occupy jobs in the industry.

“I wanted to work for an oil company but they said they wanted skilled people. I will apply for this scholarship so that I can later work in the oil industry,” said Kwesiga.

Ernest Kiiza Monday Apuuli, the Bunyoro Minister welcomed the scholarship scheme, saying it had come at a time when the host communities needed to prepare for the countless jobs that will be created by oil production.

“These scholarships will help the host communities to build the much needed capacity to work in the oil industry,” explained Kiiza. Currently, a good number of technical positions in the oil and gas exploration region are occupied by expatriates and people who don’t hail from the host communities.  

Using the World Bank loan, a new technical school for training oil and gas personnel will also be built in Nwoya district, to increase intake for oil and gas courses. Construction of the facility will kick-off in the next financial year.

The same money will be used to upgrade the facilities of the three Oil and Gas technical institutions to meet international standards. Government, Alupo noted was in advanced stages of procuring international accreditation for the three institutions.

 “Very soon we will invite international oil and gas institutions to collaborate with our institutes. This way, our students can acquire training of global standards,” said Alupo.

Commercial oil production is expected to begin in 2016 at the earliest.

Uganda first discovered crude deposits in the Albertine rift basin along its border with Democratic Republic of Congo in 2006 and reserves are estimated by the government at 3.5 billion barrels.

However, reserves could grow in coming years because about 60% of the Albertine graben, which measures about 23,000 square kilometres, remains unlicensed, according to the energy ministry's petroleum exploration and production department.

Uganda plans to start with a refinery with capacity of 30,000 barrels per day (bpd), gradually rising to 60,000 bpd. The country initially wanted a plant that could process 120,000 bpd but oil firms argued that would not be commercially viable.

RELATED ARTICLES

60 graduate in oil and gas training

Tullow trains Ugandan oil experts, MUBS starts petroleum courses

The turnaround in Uganda’s oil and gas industry

Oil and Gas spur infrastructure development in East Africa

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
UBTEB exams start on Monday
The Uganda Business and Technical Examinations for the end of this year will kicking off on Monday where a total of 49, 834 candidates registered to sit for them....
Two Pallisa women killed over family land
An elderly woman and her daughter in Pallisa district are hacked to death over land wrangles within their family....
Court orders status report on terror suspect property
Grade one magistrate Simon Zirintuusa has ordered a status report on the confiscated property of one of the 10 Al shabaab-linked terror suspects arrested in September in the city suburb of Kisenyi....
Uganda’s young population soars
About 13.1 million Ugandans are aged 10-24, according to a new United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) report.The report shows that Uganda’s population at 38.8 million, contradicting the national census results which put the figure at 34.9 million....
MPs pin energy ministry officials over sh13b
The ministry of energy and mineral development chief accountanting officer, Eng. Paul Mubiru has come under scrutiny when MPs raised a red flag, for failure to take action on the ministry’s workers who have not accounted for over sh13bn....
Interpol call for roadmap to tackle fake drugs
Interpol has called for a greater global response to pharmaceutical crime as it warned criminal gangs were capitalising on weaknesses in legislation and border controls.At a conference in Dublin, the global crime agency said the growth in crime involving fake or tampered-with medicines threatens the lives of millions of people and undermines health systems worldwide....
Should workers be subjected to a 4% Health Insurance Tax??
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter