Mountains of the Moon University in Fort Portal has been officially taken over by the government.
The government’s control of the institution was authorized by Parliament in September. Because the Rwenzori sub-region lacks a public university, the State Minister for Higher Education told MPs that converting the institution to a public university would address the issue of regional balance and equity.
The community university was founded in 2005 by a group of distinguished individuals that included the current Minister of Tourism, Tom Butime, Professor Edward Rugumayo, Justice Seith Manyindo, and others.
In 2017, the institution’s administration requested that the government take ownership and turn it into a public university.
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor John Kasenene, said that they can no longer afford the institution’s high operating expenditures. He also stated that paying staff wages and improving infrastructure are major challenges for the university.
The creators, led by Professor Rugumayo, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the government on Thursday. Minister Chrysostom Muyingo and Attorney General Kiryowa Kiwanuka made up the government’s team.
Prof Rugumayo stated that the takeover is a significant step in realizing their larger goal of providing better education to Ugandans throughout the region and beyond.
On June 1, 2022, the University will begin full operations as a public university, according to Muyingo. He also assured the institution’s workers that they would be given first consideration in the recruitment process.
“For the staff, there will be a validation process. We believe that because Mountains of the Moon is a chartered university, its employees must be up to snuff. “However, after a new university council is in place, that process will be handled,” Muyingo stated.
He also stated that the university will be managed by a four-member transition taskforce.
Dr. Pius Coxwell Achanga, Director Quality Assurance at the National Council for Higher Education, chairs the team, which also includes Prof. John Kasenene as Vice-Chairperson, Dr. Edmond Kagambe, and Grace Kagambe.
Dr Achanga said that the institution will retain its name.
The Mountains of the Moon University now becomes the second private institution to be taken over by the government after Kabale University in 2018.