Gulu University students join Makerere’s ‘Fees Must Fall’ strike

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Gulu University students are set to stage a peaceful demonstration tomorrow Friday in a show of solidarity with their Makerere University counterparts against the 15 per cent cumulative tuition increment.

Under the controversial new fees policy approved by Makerere University Council in July 2018, tuition fees for all undergraduate courses are to be cumulatively increased by 15 per cent every academic year for the next five years. The policy has sparked protracted students protests since October 22 leading to running battles with security officers.

The protests are marred by a violent crackdown on students by the police backed by the military paralyzing business at Uganda’s biggest and oldest public University. Now, Gulu University students have written to Gulu district police commander, Emmanuel Mafundo seeking protection for their planned demo tomorrow.

The students have pinned a write up on all Gulu University notice boards watermarked “Fees Must Fall.”

“A demonstration is everyone’s right and the security forces were in the wrong when they unleashed terror on striking Makerere University students and vandalized their property in the process,” reads the notice in part.

According to the notice, the demonstration is set to start at 9:45 am from the university main campus proceeding to Gulu town comprising of a maximum of 70 students. A concerned student in the Faculty of Agriculture and Environment told URN on condition of anonymity that the demonstration will begin from the main campus to the offices of the resident district commissioner (RDC), LC V chairman, district education officer (DEO), and Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC).

Jimmy Patrick Okema, the Aswa River Region police spokesperson, said he wasn’t in office to comment on the matter and requested more time to consult.

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