February 3, 2014

Education Ministry Moves To Amend UNEB Act

Uganda's Minister of Education and Sports Jessica Alupo.
Uganda’s Minister of Education and Sports Jessica Alupo.

The Education and Sports ministry has embarked on a process, which will culminate in the revision of the Uganda National Examinations act.

It comes amidst increased criticism against the Education Ministry for failing to revise the act so as to address emerging challenges. The UNEB act was passed in 1983 and has never been revised since then despite the fact that Uganda National Examinations Board if facing with changing trends of the education system.

During the release of the Primary Leaving Examination results of Friday Jessica Alupo, the education and sports minister was also bombarded with questions as to why her ministry had taken two decades to amend the act when UNEB continues to face challenges, which its cant resolve because of complications in the law. At the time of enacting the UNEB act, all the primary, secondary and technical examinations were set and marked by the board.

However, currently, technical, business and health examinations are administered by independent bodies. At the committee level, the current act provides for election of primary, secondary, technical and business examinations committee. The same act had also incorporated the principals of all technical institutes to be members of the technical examinations committee. However, this cannot be possible after the removal of the business and technical examinations from UNEB.

Proponents of the amendment want the act to be reviewed to accommodate the new changes and make provisions to address new challenges that may arise in the near future. UNEB already submitted its proposal to the education ministry. Alupo says the act will soon be amended. Despite the fact that she does not mention specific areas earmarked for amendments, Alupo says her ministry has already received submissions from the board.

She says technocrats at the ministry are already working on the provisions that need to be amended.

Alupo says once the submissions are complete, it will be presented to the cabinet for approval before they are table before parliament for debate and possible passing. Alupo says with the amendments, UNEB will be in a better position to provide high quality examinations that will propel Uganda to the next level.

She also says various examination boards that have been created out of UNEB will be required to be complainant with the ever changing trends in the education system in the country. She has asked the officials at the board to ensure examination quality is not compromised.

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