GOWN CRISIS: Kyambogo graduands to buy graduation gowns in private shops

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By Anitah Ashemereirwe and Leonald kamugisha Akida,

NATIONAL

On 15th November 2022, Prof Eli Katunguka Rwakishaya, the vice chancellor Kyambogo university released a letter allowing all graduands of 18th Kyambogo university graduation to purchase graduation gowns from the open market.

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This is because the university has not been able to provide customized gowns in time for the upcoming graduation .

“You are therefore at liberty to purchase your respective graduation gowns from the open market as has been the practice,” says the vice chancellor.

However, it should be recalled that the university has been making graduation gowns for graduands for the previous years and there fore the university regrets for inconveniences caused as stated in the letter.
Graduation gowns crisis is not a new challenge in public universities in Uganda.

In 2020, Makerere University asked graduands to buy gowns from private shops after the supplier failed to deliver gowns on time.

According to the university, the supplier was withholding gowns over the alleged Sh75m outstanding arrears of the previous graduation.

It was however, later realized that the then university secretary Dr. Charles Barugahare had contracted a ghost supplier company Team Uganda Company to supply branded gowns which he breached.

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The twist of events was when the Vice Chancellor Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe denied knowledge of the company and it’s contact address.

“I do not know the other name of Kasumba who owns the company, and I do not know where the company is located. What I can tell you is that he was contracted three years back to supply us after he won the bid,” Prof Nawangwe said.

The January 2020 Makerere graduation gown crisis saga prompted Prof. Nawangwe to suspend Dr. Barugahare and stripped him of his roles as the university secretary replacing him with his deputy Mr. Yusuf Kirunda on June 29.

It’s however not clear if the crisis at Kyambogo has any relationship to that at Makerere.

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