What started as a simple demonstration led by female students yesterday has escalated into a full-blown strike at Uganda’s premier institution of higher learning. At least 3 students have been arrested for protesting what they call unfair 15% tuition increment policy. The university council last year approved the cumulative increment in five years meaning each student will be paying 75% increment on his or her tuition.
Early this morning, lectures at the University were disrupted by the strike which entered its day two. The strike which started from Mitchel hall of residence saw the students force their colleagues who were attending lectures at different colleges out of lecture halls.
Police and military have been engaged in running battles with the students who have vowed to continue striking until the policy is withdrawn. Some students have locked themselves in their halls of residence chanting “fees must fall”.
“This university is for the poor, why are we being locked out by this Nawangwe policy?”, some of the students were heard saying before they were intercepted and dispersed by police which fired tear gas and rubber bullets.
The Vice-Chancellor Prof Barnabas Nawangwe has so far suspended two students whom he accuses of disrupting activities at the university yet student leaders approved the tuition policy.