Universal Primary Education’s (UPE) mission is not first grades – Col.Katabazi Deputy ISO Chief

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The Deputy Director General of the Internal Security Organization, Lt. Col. Emmanuel Katabazi has asked the media to stop judging the success of Universal Primary Education (UPE) from the first grades scored at PLE While addressing journalists from Kigezi Sub region in Kabale.

The Deputy Director general of the Internal Security Organization, Lt. Col. Emmanuel Katabazi has urged the media to refrain from evaluating the performance of Universal Primary Education (UPE) based solely on PLE first-grade test results while speaking to reporters from the Kigezi Sub-region in Kabale.

While addressing journalists from Kigezi Sub region in Kabale on Saturday ,5th August 2023, Col Katabazi said that the primary plan for government wasn’t first grades but to eradicate illiteracy, adding that good grades are okay, but what matters most is the education for all Ugandans.

“Government’s plan was to ensure that illiteracy levels are reduced significantly; If a woman gives birth and is able to know that it’s important to take the baby for immunization because she was taught about that in school, then it’s a score for the UPE Program. If a Ugandan comes across a signpost and is able to understand the words written, again, it’s an achievement for UPE,” Col. Katabazi said.

Lt. Col. Katabazi also asked the media to always follow up the pupils who score first grades and report not only about their academic career, but also their life after School.

“Where are those who scored first grades, and how are they helping Uganda to solve the social-economic problems affecting the populace?” He asked.

He implored journalists to give coverage to issues that promote transformation of the country, especially in line with the economy, rather than promoting negativities about the already existing programs.

“For example, we have professors, engineers and so on, but we still use imported pencils in those UPE schools that you portray as weak. Why not investigate and report about why Uganda is still importing such small things, yet we have the so-called learned people that could help make them from here? Why do we still use books with foreign content, yet we have people with doctorates, and we would expect them   to write down this content?” Katabazi asked.

According to Katabazi, today’s meeting with media practitioners was all intended to popularize the role of ISO among journalists and bridge the gap between the two entities as they both execute their mandate in service to the country.

A study by Fredrick Mutabaruka a researcher from Mountains of the Moon University reveals that UPE has increased access to education in Uganda, With the number of Pupils increasing from nearly 2.5 million in 1997 to 8.2 million in 2015.

The UPE program was introduced as an instrument of economic transformation and to reduce gender disparities in education that was introduced by President Yoweri Museveni in 1997.

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