Rt. Hon Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga determined to promote literacy among Busoga pupils
UDE-UK a charitable arm of The Ugandan Convention in UK in support of TWAM, A Christian charity sending tools across the world mobilised text books and education materials and tools for Hon. Kadaga’s foundation to boost literacy levels in Kamuli District and Busoga at large.
Hon Kadaga, in her recent visit to London, had discussions with Mr. Willy Mutenza, Chairman of Uganda Convention – UK, and appealed for support in her bid to promote a reading culture and improvements in children’s self-esteem and expressions in Busoga. She further said that her goal is to reduce the number of pupils who fail exams at Uneb because they can’t read and interpret questions.
In recent years, Uganda government have made strenuous efforts to make education available to more people and thus to expand the numbers of people able to read. Yet “the country lacks a reading culture” is a common lament. The expansion of education seems to have had little effect, so far, on reading habits.
Only 3 of every 10 pupils in P3 and P4 are able to read and understand a story. And 2 of every 10 pupils in P6 and P7 cannot read and understand a P2 text, according to a Uwezo report.
A survey by Dr. Robinah Kyeyune of the School of Education at Makerere University shows that many teachers use poor methods of teaching on how to read.
“The teachers are not taught reading skills so they are unable to transfer them to their pupils and some don’t realise that reading is a taught skill.
Uganda made a huge leap forward in education in 1997, when the government launched its Universal Primary Education initiative, with the goal of making education free for everyone. As thousands more children started school, there was real sense of hope that at last everyone would have a chance to engage in learning in a structured way. There was hope that literacy levels would increase, but the challenges to a totally free education in Ugandan are many and there are still fees associated with education that must be born by the families. The situation for those who had not had a chance to improve on their literacy was even starker, in 1997 they added up to 37 percent of the Ugandan population, about 7 million adults plus children. Female illiteracy stands at 49 per cent and it is higher in war affected regions such as Northern Uganda. This is what UDE-UK works to change – to see a literate environment develop in which everyone participates, to enable people to take charge of their own learning and development, and to see parents encouraging children in their education.
About Rt. Hon. Kadaga
Rt. Hon. Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga is a Ugandan lawyer and politician who has been Speaker of the Parliament of Uganda since 19 May 2011. She is the first woman to be elected Speaker in the history of the Parliament of Uganda. She succeeded Edward Ssekandi, who served as Speaker from 2001 to 2011. She is also the current Member of Parliament (MP) for the Kamuli District Women’s Constituency, Busoga sub-region, a position she has held since 1989.
She was born in Kamuli District, Eastern Uganda, on 24 May 1956. Rebecca Kadaga attended Namasagali College for her high school education. She studied law at Makerere University, graduating with the degree of Bachelor of Laws (LLB), in 1978. She went on to obtain a Diploma in Legal Practice from the Law Development Centre in Kampala in 1979. In 2000, she obtained a Diploma in Women’s Law from the University of Zimbabwe. In 2003, she obtained the degree of Master of Arts (MA), specialising in Women’s Law, also from the University of Zimbabwe.
About UDE-UK “Change your life today”
UDE-UK promotes social inclusion and development of those most excluded from society, in particular members of the Ugandan/African Diaspora by organising workshops in literacy and CV writing. This is also achieved by mentoring people in education and employment, providing counselling, advice, information and general support.
UDE-UK addresses the needs of the Ugandan Diaspora in the UK, and of the African Diaspora at large. Members of the African Diaspora usually face a number of challenges as they aim to settle in their host country. These challenges can at times feel overwhelming and individuals may not readily know where to turn to for help and support.