KAMPALA, The Ugandan government intends to set up a special fund to facilitate research in universities, says Education Minister and First Lady Janet Museveni.

Without giving a timeline for establishing the fund, she said the proposed research endowment would guarantee funding for critical academic investigations at universities instead of relying on foreign financing to undertake studies.

We plan to create a fund for research in universities so that we can do research and the results remain here for us to utilize. Sometimes, research studies are funded and the results taken away, Museveni stated.

The Minister noted that institutions of higher learning were grappling with limited financing across Africa because governments were trying to deliver on other equally critical commitments such as energy, infrastructure and health and paying high wage bills for public servants.

Funding to education is not sufficient in Africa but Universities also need to find out how they can increase funding. Universities need to come to governments with solutions, she said during the opening of the 4th international Inter-Disciplinary Conference at Kyambogo University here Tuesday.

She decried the high unemployment levels in the country, noting that universities churned out an estimated 40,000 graduates each year, but only about 8,000 of them were absorbed by the public and private sectors.

Making a case for research, the minister said universities should liaise with employers to establish the kind of employees they are seeking, noting that universities like Makerere are still delivering academic courses that are not needed by the market today.

We need to break the barriers that keep us isolated. Universities train people who are not needed in the job market. Graduates from Mbarara University of Science get employed because their courses meet the needs, she said.



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