5 May 2010

Uganda: Parliament Approves Two to Education Service Commission

Parliament has approved President Museveni's sister, Dr Violet Floelich Kajubiri, as a new member of the Education Service Commission.

Dr Kajubiri was approved together with Hajj Abdalatif Wangubo to be members of the commission by MPs on the Parliamentary Appointments Committee in a closed meeting that was chaired by Speaker Edward Ssekandi yesterday.

A source told Daily Monitor yesterday that only five MPs attended the meeting that vetted and approved the two commissioners.

"Much as Dr Kajubiri is President Museveni's sister, we approved her appointment basing on her capability. She has what it takes to serve on the commission," the source who preferred anonymity because he is not authorised to comment on the matter, said.

When contacted, Mr Ssekandi neither accepted nor denied approving the two commissioners but said MPs are not supposed to discuss what was agreed upon in the committee.

"Since the Sixth Parliament, the laws bar us from revealing what is before the Appointments Committee and whether that is true or not, I am not in the position to tell you," he said.

He said they shall only give a report to President Museveni who is the appointing authority. Dr Kajubiri declined to be interviewed by journalists after the vetting exercise.

Dr Kajubiri has a Masters Degree in Biology and a doctorate in science. In a March 3 memo by the President's Principal Private Secretary Amelia Kyambadde to Speaker Ssekandi, Cabinet approved the two new members of the commission.

List of relatives

Parliament vets presidential nominees and reports back to the President. The Appointments Committee has the powers to approve or reject the presidential nominees if they find their credentials lacking.

Mr Wangubo, formerly an MP representing Bunya West in Mayuge District, is a teacher at Nabisunsa Girls School.

Currently working as an independent consultant in educational and sustainable development for USAID and World Bank, Ms Kajubiri joins a long list of the president's immediate family employed in the government.

These include among others; his wife Janet who is the State Minister for Karamoja, his brother Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh, who is an Adviser on Security and his son, Lt. Col. Muhoozi Kainerugaba, who heads the Presidential Guard Brigade.

Ms Kajubiri led the special presidential commission that carried out an audit of Uganda's universities and tertiary institutions in 2007.

The Education Service Commission is charged with delivering an efficient and accountable education service.

They also appoint, confirm and exercise disciplinary action on errant persons in the sector.

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