Fun as MP Nambooze Visits her Former Primary School in Full School Uniform

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Nambooze having porridge with the rest of the pupils as she holds are slice of breed shared to her by one of the pupils.

The Social Media is awash with the pictures of Mukono Municipality Member of Parliament, Betty Nambooze Bakireke putting on a school uniform for her former primary school which she left over 41 years ago after sitting for her Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE). Clad in a purple dress, with a badge reading Bishop East Primary School, Nambooze put on black closed shoes with white stockings.

The legislator who left home early in the morning not to be punished by the teacher on duty for coming late, she went class by class starting with Primary One up to Primary Seven.

Nambooze shared her past experiences to the pupils in each and every class she entered. She sat with the pupils, and asked a number of questions from them, making her visit interactive and enjoyable by the learners.

“Because I was a tiny short girl by the time I was in Primary One, I used to sit in front in order not to miss what the teachers taught,” she said.

She would sit on desks with the pupils, move around the class, write on the blackboard, making some simple calculations most especially when it came to multiplying the years she was in each of the classes.

She said: “It was in the year 1967 when I was here in Primary Two, meaning they are now 46 years. It’s indeed a great pleasure coming back home. I really loved and treasured the time I was at Bishop East.”

In Primary One, Nambooze led a song, “Twajja tuli mbuzi, kati tugunjuse, ba ttica mwebale, okutusomesa…” literally meaning, “We were ignorant by the time we came to school, so teachers thank you for teaching us.”

Nambooze in one of the classrooms at Bishop East Primary School.

She asked the children their dream careers where one of them mentioned a Member of Parliament.

At break time, the legislator also got ebbakuli like the rest of the pupils and she lined up for porridge. Unlike other schools, mostly private, which have dining halls where children have their meals from, at Bishop East, the classrooms double as the dining.

Nambooze eating her porridge while at Bishop East Primary School.

As any other Universal Primary Education (UPE) school where some parents prefer not to pay lunch fee for their children whereas in others they are forced to do so, it seemed to be the same story here. Nambooze led the prayer before they started eating their porridge.

Some parents pack escorts (eats) for their children to eat while having their porridge. One of the children shared a slice with Nambooze which she also shared with a pupil who was seated next to her.

Nambooze seated in a classroom at her former primary school, Bishop East Primary School.

While talking to the children, she said teachers have a right to punish them when need arises though they must punish them reasonably.

Any use of a stick in schools by teachers to punish the children is regarded as a corporal punishment and it was barred by the government through the Ministry of Education and Sports.

She had a special session with the Primary Seven candidates as she inspired them to work hard and make their school shine.

She toured the school going through the teacher’s quarters which are so dilapidated, the kitchen, the sanitary places (toilets).

Though Nambooze is the area member of parliament in a place where her school is located, near Mukono diocese headquarters and not far from her home cell, Nakabago, she seemed to have taken over 20 years without going there or picking interest in what was transpiring there.

She did not know when the uniform they had during their years was changed and she said that was not good. It was the reason she appeared in a plain purple dress yet the current pupils put on checked with purple and white.

The legislator was surprised to find the toilet she claimed was the one they used during her time at the school, yet her mother and grandparents also used it when it was still present and in use yet in poor conditions.

“Though it gives a credit to the people those days for putting up such quality work, unlike the contractors we have today whose constructions collapse in one or two years, it’s a pity, it would have been replaced a long time ago,” she said.

Nambooze also mocked the government for failure to put up new structures in such a school which have lasted for more than 100 years now.

“Imagine, classrooms in which we used to sit in during our times when we were over 30-40 in a stream, they are now accommodating more than 100 pupils.  Something must be done,” she noted.

Bishop East was started in 1920. It currently holds a population of 720 with 20 teachers. At least 14 of the teachers are female.

On the big number of pupils in this school despite the limited resources, Nambooze said it came as a result of the foundation body’s (Mukono diocese) closure of Bishop Central Primary School and withdrawal of Bishop West Primary School from government. Bishop West is now a private boarding school.

“I am appealing to the Mukono diocese to reinstate our two schools but make the children pay some reasonable fees to the foundation body as church fee,” she advised.

Nambooze was also not happy to find the school without any watchman and she was told that it only has one who only works for night duties.

She therefore appealed to the government to have schools given security personnel saying for a school like this one, it must be with six of them.

“I don’t mean Policemen or UPDF army officers but security guards. Our children must be secured day and night. But in this case, only one watchman is not sufficient, not even at night,” she noted.

The headteacher’s house which is among the dilapidated buildings at Bishop East Primary School.

Herbert Kisira, the deputy headteacher said they lack enough toilets, staff quarters and classrooms. Kisira said that the teachers share the toilet with the pupils, which they keep complaining about though with nothing to do.

He said they need at least seven other classrooms so that they can divide some of the classes into different streams. Mukono Municipality currently has 33 universal primary schools but most of them are in poor condition with dilapidated classrooms, teachers’ quarters and toilets.









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