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Children play in the compound of Nombe Primary School in Ntoroko District after the school was closed due to the Arts teachers’ strike late month. PHOTO | FILE

When the Uganda National Teachers Union (Unatu) and other public service unions signed Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) with the government on June 22, 2018, the public servants under the umbrella body thought the worst was behind them. 

The CBA highlighted plans for salary enhancement across all categories of civil servants for Financial Years 2018/2019 and 2019/2020. It, however, didn’t take long to run into trouble. 

In 2019, Unatu leadership mobilised teachers across the country to withdraw labour over delayed salary enhancement. 

Consequently, President Museveni summoned teachers’ representatives and persuaded them to suspend the strike.

The salary enhancement discussions were put on the back-burner when schools shut their doors to two Covid-19 variants across nearly two years. The schools finally re-opened this January when pandemic curbs were relaxed.

Going on strike

On May 23, Unatu’s standing committee sat and “unanimously ratified the resolution” resolved to down their tools on June 15, if there was “no satisfactory feedback on the issues pertaining to teachers’ salary increment across the board for Financial Year 2022/2023.”

Mr Filbert Baguma, Unatu’s secretary general, added thus: “Every financial year, teachers have to remind government about the commitments earlier made. Do teachers really matter to this nation? Are the commitments made by government mere boardroom gimmicks meant to silence teachers and foil any plans for industrial action?”

Mr Baguma also revealed that due to alleged constant disappointments, anxiety was mounting among teachers. 

Only satisfactory feedback from the government on their demands, he added, would stop the intended industrial action in its tracks. 

In its absence, as promised, nearly 120,000 Arts teachers in government-aided primary and secondary schools downed their tools on June 15.  

It would straddle more than a fortnight before the Arts teachers grudgingly accepted this past week to take up the chalk.


The call for industrial action came after Science teachers under their union—the Uganda Profession Teachers Union (UPSTU)—suspended their strike indefinitely. 

The strike had been declared at the start of the second term. The Science teachers relented after the government assured them that the Budget for the 2022/2023 financial year catered to their salary enhancement.

On May 23, Unatu issued a notification to government expressing intention to resume their industrial action if government insisted on implementing “discriminatory salary enhancements” instead of honouring commitments made in the 2018 CBA.

Mr Baguma said during the signing of the CBA, it was also agreed that negotiations for 2020/2021 and 2022/2023 aimed at removing disparities in scales would proceed as agreed. 

He further noted that while some categories of civil servants in the CBA—particularly those in phase one—received their increment in full, teachers, who were supposed to benefit from phase two, received only 25 percent of the expected increment.

The Unatu secretary general, however, hastened to add that the union leadership was still open for further negotiations. 

The option of a strike was not taken off the table, although, especially if their issues were not addressed.

A week into the Arts teachers’ strike, Ms Ketty Lamaro—the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education and Sports—revealed that Unatu’s concerns were being discussed, internally. 

“Teachers should desist from anything that disrupts teaching and learning. Schools were grossly affected by the Covid-19 lockdown, and we are now trying to accelerate learning to recover the lost time,” she noted, adding, “[The Arts teachers’] salaries will be enhanced, but in a phased manner because government does not have enough money to pay everyone at the same time.”

Ms Catherine Bitarakwate, the Public Service ministry Permanent Secretary, also reiterated Ms Lamaro’s appeal.


Unatu though, was unwavering in its demand that the government pay Shs4.8m to graduate secondary school Science teachers and Shs4.5m for their Arts counterparts, among other categories. It wasn’t long before the First Lady Janet Museveni—who also doubles as Education and Sports minister—invited Unatu’s top brass for a meeting originally scheduled for June 17 but pushed to June 18 at State House, Entebbe.

The meeting, which was held behind closed doors, was addressed by President Museveni. Mr Usher Wilson Owere, the chairman general of National Organisation of Trade Union (Notu), described the meeting as stormy. Mr Museveni is reported to have advised the Arts teachers to return to work, promising that their enhancement would be done in a phased manner. 

The Unatu top brass, which is said to have taken offence with the President’s tone, defied his directive to return to class.

Not even a June 22 letter from Ms Bitarakwate that described “the current industrial action by the members of Unatu” as “illegal” swayed the teachers. The letter—which in no uncertain terms said the striking teachers had “decided to close the schools” and that “no teacher… has the legal right or justification to close a public school without the concurrence of the government”—was roundly criticised by the public. 

Keen to mend fences, Ms Bitarakwate and Vice President Jessica Alupo wrote to Unatu on June 27 seeking an audience. 

The Unatu top brass met with Ms Alupo on June 28, but the discussions held—described as cordial by Mr Baguma—yielded no results.

Turning point

On June 30, Unatu received two letters from the government directing teachers to return to class as negotiations continue. 

The letters from Public Service Minister Wilson Muruli Mukasa and Ms Bitarakwate repeated explanations that scientists were cleared for salary enhancements because they are needed in crucial areas of the economy such as agriculture, industry, and ICT.

The letters precipitated a July 3 meeting involving members of Unatu’s national executive council. 

While Unatu resolved to continue with the strike, there was a change in tune when the teachers met President Museveni on July 3. The teachers resolved to return to class effective July 6, with Mr Museveni later tweeting “please don’t divert us from our journey of attracting and retaining scientists by paying them comparatively and competitively. Don’t interfere with government’s strategy.”

Soon, Mr Baguma found himself on the defensive for the first time after a disbelieving public questioned the sudden change of heart.

“There is a rumour flying over social media that the leaders have been bribed. The leaders have a responsibility to take leadership… if you don’t take over your membership, then you can take them to a wrong direction,” he said.

A section of Art teachers, who have since resumed teaching, said they are working with an extremely low morale. Speaking on the floor of Parliament this past week, Opposition Chief Whip John Baptist Nambeshe (Manjiya County) said the selective enhancement of salaries “has opened a Pandora’s box.”

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Daily Monitor

At least 15 people have been shot dead in a bar in the South African township of Soweto, police say.

Police said gunmen entered the Orlando East tavern in the early hours of Sunday morning and started firing randomly at a group of young people.

They then fled the scene in a white minibus. No motive for the attack has been established, police said.

Several more people are in critical condition in hospital, the BBC’s Nomsa Maseko reports.

The victims are believed to be between 19 and 35 years old.

Gauteng province’s head of police, Lieutenant General Elias Mawela, told the BBC the shooting appears to have been “a cold-blooded attack on innocent tavern patrons.”

Four other people were killed in a separate tavern shooting in the south-eastern province of KwaZulu-Natal, police said on Sunday.

Shootings are not uncommon in South Africa. They are often linked to gangs or alcohol.

But this is an exceptionally high death toll and comes soon after the death of 21 teenagers thought to have been either gassed or poisoned at another bar in the city of East London. BBC/KBC


JUBA – The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) led by President Salva Kiir Mayardit has said it has registered more than 4.5 million members during the ongoing mass mobilization campaign across the country.

Speaking to reporters during a press conference in Juba on Friday, Peter Lam Both, the SPLM Interim Secretary-General, said the more than 4.5 million members were registered within a period of five months.

“Since the launch of the SPLM renaissance mission in March this year which our competition took for elections campaign, we have registered more than 4.5 million people as members of the SPLM across the states,” Lam told reporters at Friday’s press conference in Juba.

Lam said the registration is ongoing and the number is expected to increase.

“We started the registration of the SPLM members in March this year and every state chairperson with their state secretarial are asked to start registration from Bomas, Payams, Counties, and State headquarters,” Lam said.

“They have reported to us what they have done and we went to the state to verify that and this is how we came with number 4.5 million.”

Lam claimed that the ruling was blocked by SPLA-IO commanders from carrying out mobilization in their IO-controlled areas.

“With exception of some counties where SPLM-IO commanders are not informed that we are at peace in Juba, they denied SPLM to organize in those areas even as we allow IO elements to enjoy in the areas which we control,” Lam claimed.

The SPLM launched the Renaissance initiative in March this year.

President Salva Kiir has been endorsed as the SPLM flag-bearer in Eastern Equatoria State, Jonglei State, Lakes State, Unity State’s and among others, as the ruling party pushed for the 2008 census to be used in anticipated 2023 elections. - Sudans Post

  • Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) Offices at Integrity Centre in Nairobi. ‎Monday, ‎18 ‎November ‎2019.
  • The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Corruption (EACC) has filed two different cases against two government officials in land grabbing cases valued at Ksh95 million.

    According to the EACC statement dated Saturday, July 9, a former lands commissioner allegedly aided the grabbing of 400 acres of land set aside by the government for use as a veterinary farm.

    EACC detailed that the former commissioner helped a private developer grab the land located in Naivasha valued at Ksh77 million. 

    "EACC has filed a court case in Nakuru to recover 400 acres of public land in Naivasha grabbed by private developers aided by former Commissioner of Lands. The land, valued at Ksh77,902,500, had been set aside for Government use as a Veterinary Farm," the EACC statement read in part.

    Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission CEO Twalib Mbarak.
    Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission CEO Twalib Mbarak.  FILE

    The case to recover the land has been filed in Naivasha by the anti-graft body. Another lands commissioner has been implicated by EACC in aiding a private developer to acquire land in Kabarnet Town.

    The grabbed land which EACC is seeking to reposes is valued at Ksh18 million.

    "Similar suit has been filed in Court in Karbanet to recover Ksh18 million public land grabbed from the Department of Housing and Urban Settlement in Kabarnet Town. Former Commissioner of Lands who facilitated the transaction is sued alongside the respondents," EACC stated.

    The revelations come just days after the commission announced the recovery of a Ksh50 million mansion grabbed from the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA).

    EACC stated that the recovery of the government house based in Mombasa county was made after both parties decided to settle the matter out of court.

    The anti-graft agency added that the mansion was a three bedroom house and sat on a 2,289-square-meter piece of land. 

    "EACC has recovered a Ksh51 million grabbed government house in Mombasa, from Rombli Agencies and Others. The Defendants agreed to surrender the original title to the 0.2289 ha 3-bed-roomed house and servant quarter," the statement read in part.

    EACC CEO Twalib Mbarak after presenting a cheque to the Kenya Covid-19 Fund on April 28, 2020.
    EACC CEO Twalib Mbarak after presenting a cheque to the Kenya Covid-19 Fund on April 28, 2020.  TWITTER 
  • President Uhuru Kenyatta during a prayer meeting with religious leaders from Central Kenya Region at State House on Friday, July 8, 2022.
  • President Uhuru Kenyatta has for the first time addressed a leaked audio clip that captured his deputy, William Ruto, allegedly saying that he almost slapped him.

    Speaking at State House on Friday, July 8, during a meeting with religious leaders, Uhuru stated that he was willing to step aside in 2017 after the Supreme Court annulled his victory.

    The Head of State noted that his decision and willingness to go home was based on the fact that he would not stand a bloodshed in the country over an election. 

    He confirmed that he indeed thought of going back to his Ichaweri, Gatundu home, if that was the only way to prevent the nation from sliding into violence similar to what was experienced in 2007.

    Uhuru Kenyatta at State House during a prayer meeting with religious leaders from Central Kenya on Friday, July 8, 2022.
    Uhuru Kenyatta at State House during a prayer meeting with religious leaders from Central Kenya on Friday, July 8, 2022.

    "If they had slapped me over power, I would have given them the other cheek to slap. Yes, I wanted to go back to Ichaweri because I couldn't compare power with bloodshed. 

    "These seats we occupy (Presidency) are not more valuable than human life. I had said yes, I will not see more people lose lives because of a seat," Uhuru stated.

    The Head of State told the religious leaders that the effects of the 2007-2008 post election violence were still fresh in his memories and he had the responsibility of sheltering Kenyans from another cycle of violence.

    He maintained that he would not have let his ambition come between Kenyans and peace. Uhuru noted that he was looking forward to his retirement, blasting his deputy for claiming that he was using the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) to extend his term in office.

    "Those who wanted to slap me because I was about to give up the seat were the same ones who accused me of trying to use BBI to extend my term. How was I extending power which I had given up on?" wondered Uhuru.

    Uhuru noted that State House is not a place of fun and merrymaking and that he was looking forward to ending his term and heading home like his predecessor, the late Mwai Kibaki. 

    With one month to the August General Election, Uhuru hosted the men of the cloth from his political backyard for a non-denominational worship and prayer service.

    Religious leaders hosted by President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House during a prayer meeting on Friday, July 8, 2022.
    Religious leaders hosted by President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House during a prayer meeting on Friday, July 8, 2022.

    “His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta is today at State House, Nairobi hosting hundreds of religious leaders from Central Kenya for a non-denominational worship and prayer service,” tweeted State House.

    The meeting comes months after the Jubilee Party leader met over 3,000 elders from Central Kenya in the quest to scuttle the influence of Deputy President William Ruto in the region.

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