Sixty four senior academic staffs of Kyambogo University have been dropped from the list of research grants beneficiaries over plagiarism.
Kyambogo University Council approved Shs1.7 billion as part of a grant to promote research, innovation and knowledge generation, one of the key strategic focus areas of the institution.
A call for research proposals was sent out to staff by the Research and Grants Adhoc Committee in August 2018. The proposals were sought in areas of technology, education, sciences (including chemistry, mathematics, statistics, nature, and environment, physical, biological), Arts and Humanities (Including sexual Violence at Kyambogo University), Agriculture and other vocational fields, special needs and rehabilitation as well as Management and Entrepreneurship.
But the University's Deputy Vice Chancellor in-charge of Academic Affairs Prof. Maria Musoke, says that only 19 academic staffs were successful. The rest of the proposals were found not to be original.
Prof. Musoke says that the university plans to procure plagiarism software, a reference management software, data analysis software as well as training of researchers on how to budget and account for resources especially research grants.
According to the Kyambogo University Appointments Board Chairperson Dr Mary Basaasa Muhenda, the research grants will enable improve the capacity of academic staff to supervise graduate students as well as increase capacity for successful proposal grant writing.
Dr Hannington Twinomuhwezi from Kyambogo's Chemistry Department is one of the beneficiaries of the grant and will receive Shs39 million to conduct a polychemical analysis of antimalarial drugs made from Uganda.
After six months of the study, Dr Twinomuhwezi hopes to use his research to establish whether certain local herbs can cure malaria and whether they could be domesticated by farmers.
Faith Namayengo Muyonga from the Department of Human Nutrition is focusing on the nutrition of university students with a major concern on whether students have good nutrition and good physical activity with a view of understanding its impact on non-communicable diseases.
Namayengo says the research grant will help in informing policy and feeding habits among young adults.
All successful beneficiaries of the grant awardees signed a Bonding Agreement with Kyambogo University before receiving the research funds.
Kyambogo University Vice-Chancellor Prof Eli Katunguka says the university needs to develop the research capacity of staff members. He encouraged members of staff especially those whose projects were rejected to keep applying. He says staff will be supported especially in proposal writing and budgeting.