RE: PETITION TO THE ELEVENTH PARLIAMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF UGANDA TO TAKE DOWN THE LDC gods FOR MISMANAGING STUDENTS MARKS AND FINANCES:
We are students of the Law Development Centre academic year 2019-2020 and hereby petition to you as follows;
1. That following the purported meeting held by the management committee of law development Centre on the 28th May, 2021 in accordance with rule 34(2) of the rules for passing the bar course, 2019 the academic registrar is mandated to publish results within 3 working days from the date of the meeting of the said management committee.
2. That it is to our dismay that on the 2nd June, 2021 only names of students eligible to graduate, names of students doing supplementary examinations and those discontinued were published.
3. That according to the academic registrar’s email to students dated 2nd June, 2021, the academic year 2019/2020 had 1518 students in total, 84 students passed in Kampala Campus and 937 students failed, 61 students passed at Mbarara campus and 436 failed. The total number of students that passed in the afore mentioned academic year are 145 in total and those that failed are 1, 373.
4. That in the said list 373 students were discontinued from LDC and told to pick their discontinuation letters on the 4th day of June, 2021 without any results shown to them, 1000 students were directed to pay 300,000/= for each supplementary subject effective 3rd June 2021. And as per the LDC directions, students doing supplementary in category A subjects were to commence orals on the 14th June 2021 had it not been for the suspension of learning by H. E YOWERI KAGUTA MUSEVEN TIBUHABURWA, the President of The Republic of Uganda due to the raging pandemic.
Indeed, it is a deliberate abuse of principles of fairness and natural justice and rule of law by LDC management when it dismissed students who gave in their time, money and dedication before showing them any results as stipulated by law under regulations 34 and 11(3) of Rules for Passing The Bar Course which provisions are couched in mandatory terms.
5. That in light of paragraph 5 line 6 herein above, the fore going connotes that students were most likely to do retakes without certainty of their academic status. Since from the directions of LDC management results are to be released on the 15th day of June, 2021 one day after the scheduled date for doing supplementary for those LDC purports to have failed and 4 days after graduation.
6. That from the time we entered LDC none of the students has ever seen his or her mark for weekly individual assessment which constitute 20% of the total mark, Oral exams which constitute 30% of the total mark and final exams which constitute 50% of the total mark.
7. That efforts by the students demanding publication of the results from the LDC management before graduation were rendered futile. The academic Registrar had promised students that results would be released on 7th June, 2021 however nothing happened because LDC does not have the same. Hence LDC went on to conduct graduation of students without any results released.
8. That following demand from students for publication of a breakdown of results, LDC on the 15th day of June, 2021 went ahead to release the purported results in complete disregard of rule 34(3) which provides that the academic registrar shall publish the final results by displaying them on LDC notice boards at the Centre and/or through the Centre’s website by realizing them on to personal emails of students.
9. That the purported results are very much in variance with what LDC released on 2nd June 2021 and defeats the purpose of the graduation conducted on 11th June, 2021 the inconsistencies therein include but are not limited to:
(i) That some students found that they had passed and were therefore eligible to graduate however they were not put on the list released on 2nd June 2021,
(ii) That students established that they had failed less subjects yet LDC had discontinued some of them on account that they had failed more than 3 category A subjects
(iii) That students established that they had been added more suplimentaries.
(iv) That some students that LDC put on the purported graduation list are not eligible to graduate because they failed and therefore have supplementary subjects to do.
(v) That the results released are in contravention of rule 11(3) of the rules for purposing the bar course 2019 which provides that examination results of 2nd and 3rd term results shall be released separately at the conclusion of each term to enable tracking of a student’s academic performance and progress.
Accordingly, the results LDC purports to have published do not include second term results which constitutes of oral exams and individual assessment thus cannot amount to results espoused under these regulations.
(10) That LDC conducted graduation without any students’ marks and therefore the same was conducted in default and in complete disregard of the rules of passing the bar course.
(11) That LDC’s purported publication of results 4days after graduation is treated with the greatest contempt from students in as far as students are not sure whether LDC management did not concoct results to justify the position they gave in the media. Accordingly, I am not certain or convinced whether LDC will publish actual results.
(12) That students were directed to pay 200,000/=(Two hundred thousand Uganda shillings) each translating to 303,600,000/=(Three hundred three million six hundred thousand Uganda shillings) of the 1518 students for compulsory lawyers’ dinner however the same did not take place and none of the students was refunded their money.
(13) That in the Director’s interview with the Independent Magazine dated 10th June, 2021 he concedes that they were incapable of delivering results by 11th June, 2021 due to the busy academic schedule. However, he states that results are not a precondition to graduation, I contend that the position by the director is a great contempt of reason and the principle of common sense as graduation is the summit of the academic study thus results released after graduation hold less integrity and value for those that didn’t make it on the purported list of those eligible to graduate.
The purpose of releasing results before graduation is to give room for those dissatisfied with results to lodge complaints to the appropriate forum. Results are primary to graduation. It follows therefore that when graduation precedes results, the same may influence results yet it should be otherwise.
(14) That under rule 30(1) of the rules for passing the bar course the Director of LDC is a member of the Board of Examiners. In fact, the chief examiner.
(15) That rule 30(2) of the rules for passing the bar course provides for functions of board of examiners which include among others to confirm and recommend results of the bar course to the management committee for approval. Thus, in light of paragraph 15 herein above, it follows that the results LDC purports to have released on 15th June, 2021 are in default as:
(i) There were no results confirmed and recommended for approval to the management committee by the board of examiners as required under rule 30(2) supra since the Director of LDC who doubles as the chief examiner in an interview with the Independent Magazine dated 10th June, 2021 concedes that they have no results.
(ii) That the Academic Registrar’s assertion that there was a meeting held by the Management Committee on the 28th of May, 2021 to approve results is tainted with deceit as there no results that were confirmed and recommended for approval by the board of examiners to the management committee.
(iii) That the academic registrar’s action of releasing results before approval by the management committee is ultra vires and in direct contravention of rule 35(1) supra and the same should be haulted with immediate dismissal.
(iv) That freedom of expression is a constitutional right enshrined under Article 29 of the Constitution of The Republic of Uganda 1995 thus LDC management’s conduct of silence dissenting voices is unfounded in law and it is indeed conduct unbecoming for an institution teaching defenders of justice.
(v) That if arms of government are held to account, what is LDC? Why can’t it be held accountable for mismanaging students marks and funds.
(vi) That there is a serious issue in legal practice that must be holistically approached as a government policy, it can’t be reduced to an institution like LDC students cannot spend millions of money studying law at Universities accredited by an institution of government that is THE NATIONAL COUNCIL FOR HIGHER LEARNING (NCHE) only to be told by the director of LDC that the same Universities are not credible to teach law. We submit that, that is not the cardinal role of LDC.
That said, the competition in legal practice and the failure of the national council for higher learning should not be vested on students. As from its conduct,LDC shifted its cardinal role which is to equip law students with practical legal skills to being a barrier for students getting in legal practice and the same cannot be accepted.
(vii) That the actions of LDC have occasioned a miscarriage of justice to bar course students and their parents.
(viii) That the Rules for Passing the Bar Course 2019 are instructive on the procedure of publishing results and the procedure of declaring a student to failed or passed. It follows therefore that these rules are applicable to both LDC management and students. The principle of rule of law must be reflected by an institution like LDC and the intention of this petition is to pray to this August house to uphold the same principle over decrees of the LDC gods.
WHEREFORE we pray that:
(a) That this August House takes down the LDC gods for grossly mismanaging students marks, finances and future.
(b) The purported release of results on going is halted with immediate effect.
(c) That an audit is conducted in naked conduct of LDC for concocting marks of students and consequently dismissing a number of them.
(d) That an investigation is conducted in regard to sums that were paid by students to LDC as payment for compulsory students’ dinner which was not held.
(e) That it is just, fair and equitable that the issues raised by the petitioners herein are treated with urgency and addressed by your house because students’ money, marks, hard work and time matters.
We pray that this petition is given your due consideration by the whole August house.
#Take Down the LDC gods
Cc: Ministry of Education and Sports
Cc: Inspector General of Government
Cc: Forum for Democratic Change (FDC)
Cc: Director Law Development Centre
ALL STUDENT THAT WERE UNFAIRY DISMISSED.
“THE HUMAN DIGNITY IS NOT FOR SALE”