No special exams for pupils who missed PLE due to schools mistakes, says First Lady

Deputy Speaker Jacob Oulanyah asked Mrs Museveni if there a system that can inform students and parents that the students are registered long before the exams can be put in place.

EDUCATION | Primary Leaving Examinations candidates whose status to sit the national exams were bungled up by schools administrators must wait until next year to sit PLE, Education minister Janet Museveni said.

The First Lady said it is time to set send a message and stop the habit of giving a window to pupils affected by mistakes on their part or of their school administrators.

A couple of candidates missed PLE in what was later faulted on school administrators’ failure to register them despite meeting all requirements.

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MP James Waluswaka (Bunyole West) on Thursday raised concern over the matter with the House tasking Mrs Museveni to explain what her ministry would do.

In her response to Parliament, the First Lady said that setting a special exam for the affected students would set a bad precedent for the nation.

However, Waluswaka pleaded with Mrs Museveni, pointing out that most of the affected children and making them wait for another year would put them at a great risk of unwanted pregnancies.

“Most of these children were girls and we will lose the next speakers and minister of education. I want to request for this particular case, they aren’t even fifty, these children be given a special examination. I am told UNEB (the national exams board) has special papers. Can’t we set these pupils exams?” he pleaded.

In her response, Mrs Museveni said: “But as I said, we would have set a precedent and this can’t be a one off thing and that is why we are having problems of considering another exam because there will never be a time when we say no. If they miss it, then they will have to do the following year.”

Democratic Party’s Medard Ssegona asked Janet if there government was considering compensating the victims.

“We don’t prepare for those who don’t sit. Now if we are following up to find out the actual numbers who may not have taken exams, if we find there are many more than mentioned in the media,” Mrs Museveni said in response.

However, Sseggona protested her explanations, arguing that there are people who have already been victimised.

“There are those who haven’t sat for exams as result of your weak regulations as the regulator. The question is remedial compensation measure. Is she in order to continue assuming when the facts are there?” Ssegona asked.

Mr Museveni said that government will determine what precautionary measures to be taken but at the moment, “we are doing that.”

Abbas Agaba (Kitagwenda County) asked if it was possible for the ministry to find those responsible for candidates missing exams and if government will shoulder responsibility for the damages.

The minister said that the ministry is still trying to investigate why students weren’t registered because the said schools had no examination centers but it isn’t the only schools without examination centres.

Deputy Speaker Jacob Oulanyah asked Mrs Museveni if there a system that can inform students and parents that the students are registered long before the exams can be put in place.

“Is it possible to devise a system where each registered candidate can find status of their registration of is or it too much?” Oulayah asked.

The minister did not directly address the issue but said, presently, there are already measures in place for candidates to find out if they have been registered.

Parliament this week tasked the Ministry of Education to explain what remedies it has put in place for students who were forced to miss PLE.

The ultimatum followed reports that at least 20 Primary Seven pupils of Bahrain Nursery and Primary School at Buseyi Village, in Iganga District failed to sit PLE which started on Monday and end today.

The pupils’ failure to sit the exams was after the school administration allegedly connived with Ministry of Education officials and misappropriated money meant for their registration.

According to the pupils, they paid Shs80,000 for registration and Shs17,000 as facilitation for the two-day examination exercise, and an additional Shs7,000 in pre-registration fees and Shs10,000 for passport sized photographs.

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