Education

Stranded Resources: Luwero Schools Struggle with Donated Iron Sheets Amid Financial Constraints

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  • While the State Minister responsible for Luwero Triangle, Alice Kaboyo, was unavailable for comment, officials from her office in Luwero town, speaking on condition of anonymity, acknowledged awareness of the situation and expressed commitment to assisting schools in effectively utilizing the donated resources.
  • Several schools in Luwero district find themselves in a predicament as they struggle to utilize donated iron sheets intended for the renovation and completion of classroom blocks.

Several schools in Luwero district find themselves in a predicament as they struggle to utilize donated iron sheets intended for the renovation and completion of classroom blocks. Despite receiving substantial donations from the government via the Ministry of Luwero Triangle in October 2023, many schools are unable to proceed with their construction projects due to financial limitations.

A recent survey conducted by our reporter reveals that eight schools in the district still haven’t utilized the iron sheets. Among them are Luwero Boys Primary School, Kyanukuzi UMEA Primary, Damascus Primary School, Kabukunga Primary School, Zirobwe Church of Uganda Primary School, Wobulenzi UMEA Primary School, Star Junior Academy, and Kalasa Mixed and Day Primary School. These schools were bestowed with varying amounts of iron sheets ranging from 50 to 250.

The delay in utilizing the donated materials is attributed to insufficient funds to procure additional construction materials and cover labor costs for roofing the classroom blocks. For instance, Luwero Boys Primary School requires approximately 10 million Ugandan Shillings to complete the roofing of four classrooms using the 200 iron sheets donated to them. The headteacher, Burton Bbumba, disclosed plans to convene a parents’ meeting to solicit contributions for the construction works.

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Similarly, Wobulenzi UMEA Primary School attempted to collect 20,000 Shillings from each parent but faced resistance, leading to intervention from the district education department. Efforts to raise funds for roofing purposes have been challenging, with some schools planning further meetings to persuade parents to contribute.

Concerns have been raised regarding the potential theft of the iron sheets if left unused for an extended period, posing a threat to future donations. Local leaders emphasize the importance of parental involvement in fundraising efforts, citing financial constraints within the district.

Criticism has been directed towards the Ministry for donating iron sheets without adequate consultation with local leaders and without clear guidelines on utilization timelines. Additionally, frustrations arise from the burden placed on headteachers to seek external support due to restrictions on charging fees in Universal Primary Education (UPE) schools.

While the State Minister responsible for Luwero Triangle, Alice Kaboyo, was unavailable for comment, officials from her office in Luwero town, speaking on condition of anonymity, acknowledged awareness of the situation and expressed commitment to assisting schools in effectively utilizing the donated resources.

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