Graduands jubilate after their graduation ceremony at Aga Khan University on Saturday. PHOTO BY ISAAC KASAMANI
Kampala – The East African Community must maximise opportunities by generating solutions to increase access to high quality education and healthcare, State Minister for Health Richard Nduhura has said. He said due to increasing population and economic growth, the demand for quality healthcare and education will also continue growing.
During the ninth Aga Khan University Convocation ceremony in Kampala at the weekend, Mr Nduhura said the key to meeting that demand was through raising competence levels of nurses and doctors.
His comments come at time when Uganda is struggling to establish the cause and cure of nodding disease which has affected about 3,004 children in Acholi sub-region.
Dr Nduhura said the disease has so far killed 170 out of the 3,000 cases officially recorded. The minister said a Shs7 billion plan had already been shared with development partners and members of the Acholi Parliamentary Group.
Mr Nduhura said with the increasing number of youth, the need for higher education to provide viable employment prospects and improve quality of life was immediate and urgent.
“Only if we can meet the demand for intellectual and economic fulfillment, will we retain bright young minds and be able to stem the brain drain from this region,” Mr Nduhura said. This limits the financial burden of education through provision of bursary and loan programmes, he added.
At least 16 students graduated with Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the university with Ms Sylvia Nalubega emerging best. The university is part of the Aga Khan Development Network which is made up of development agencies with mandates that include environment, health, education, architecture, culture, microfinance, rural development, disaster reduction and promotion of private-sector enterprise and the revitalisation of historic cities.
By Abdu Kiyaga, Daily Monitor