Makerere University fails to account for Shs 2.4bn


ABE ALTHEA

Makerere University is in the spotlight again, this time over funds amounting to over Shs 2.4bn collected from students pursuing short courses at the institution.

The university officials had a tough time before members of Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) quizzed them over their failure to fully disclose the monies collected from the programme.

The University management appeared before the Committee to respond to audit queries raised in the June 2016 Auditor General’s report that highlighted discrepancies into the University’s books of account.

In his report, the Auditor General John Muwanga noted that whereas the University cash books had recorded a Shs 86.8bn as revenue collected from short courses, this figure contrasted the one recorded in the entity’s financial statements that put the revenue collected at Shs 87.9bn.

The University Bursar, Augustine Tamale explained that the funds had been categorised under miscellaneous revenue since short courses are not viewed as tuition revenue.

“The actual cash received is Shs 86.7bn, however, there were debtor students who didn’t pay tuition amounting to Shs 2.376bn and we have affiliated institutions which hadn’t sent the money,” Tamale said.

“Part of the collection included the earlier debts, so when these adjustments are made, it comes to over Shs87bn,” he added.

Committee chairperson Angeline Osegge wondered why what Tamale was explaining was not shown as an entry anywhere for the auditors to see.

Tamale found himself in more trouble when a representative of the Auditor General’s office told tje the MPs that although it’s a known fact that Makerere University operates cash accounts, there was no way money that hadn’t been received could be recorded as revenues.

MPs joined in, pointing out that even 20% of the funds from short courses that was meant to be remitted to the center from colleges was not effected.

The audit report further revealed that the University had failed to account for another more than Shs 882m.