Presided over the 69th graduation ceremony of Makerere University, where I am also the University Visitor. Over 13000 students will graduate in the course of the week.
I congratulate the graduates and also thank the teaching and support staff for successfully shepherding these young people until they completed their studies.
The NRM government is committed to ensuring that university staff are remunerated well, and eventually we shall match global standards. This will be done gradually and in tandem with the country's economic growth.
In doing this, we must also prioritize. Not all university staff will get a salary enhancement at the same time. We need to fight the war of capacity building in a disciplined way like we did the liberation war.
I also urge the academics to engage in relevant research. For example, you must investigate why Africa, with the exception of Ethiopia, was easy to colonise and how this should be avoided.
Academics should not only understand the history of Africa, but also the laws of nature; how to tame and manipulate them for the benefit of man.
Social science disciplines should aim at developing management skills and entrepreneurship, even through the arts and entertainment like Kato Lubwama, the member of Parliament. If this teaching is done correctly and purposefully, then the products (graduates) will be useful to society.
For graduands in the arts, where job uptake is low, the government will offer support through the various youth programmes, using low interest loans and grants to start ventures like maize milling, carpentry, leather tanning, etc.
Eventually these should become owners of capital units and job creators. It will also help reduce Uganda's import bill when we stop buying items like furniture, construction materials etc, from abroad.
I must congratulate Prof Barnabas Nawangwe and the University Council for being decisive in disciplining staff. Decadence should not be part of a university.
I thank Makerere university for recognizing Dr Muranga, Rev Guma Oshabe, Alice Muhoozi and myself for our thesaurus (Katondozi) authored in Runyakitara. These indigenous languages are very rich, that is why I thought it important to contribute to their preservation.